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ERIC Number: ED507361
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 47
The Realities of K-12 Virtual Education
Glass, Gene V.
Education Policy Research Unit
In a decade, virtual education in its contemporary form of asynchronous, computer-mediated interaction between a teacher and students over the Internet has grown from a novelty to an established mode of education that may provide all or part of formal schooling for nearly one in every 50 students in the US. In a non-random 2007 survey of school districts, as many as three out of every four public K-12 school districts responding reported offering full or partial online courses. There can be little question that virtual courses in certain areas (e.g., math, English, social studies) produce tested achievement results on a par with those of their conventionally taught counterparts. Nor is it debatable that more complex areas of the curriculum (e.g., the arts) are beyond the reach of these new arrangements. Nevertheless, the rapid growth of this new form of schooling raises questions of cost, funding, and variable quality that require the immediate attention of policymakers. (Contains 2 tables.)
Education Policy Research Unit. Arizona State University, Division of Advanced Studies in Education Policy, Leadership, and Curriculum, Mary Lou Fulton Institute and Graduate School of Education, P.O. Box 872411, Tempe, AZ 85287. Tel: 480-965-1886; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice
Authoring Institution: Arizona State University, Education Policy Research Unit; University of Colorado at Boulder, Education and the Public Interest Center