ERIC Number: EJ889187
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Reference Count: 4
K-12 Virtual Schools, Accreditation, and Leadership: What Are the Issues?
Salsberry, Trudy A.
Educational Considerations, v37 n2 p14-17 Spr 2010
Virtual schools are as different from each other as traditional schools are different when one moves from community to community or state to state. A virtual school typically offers a learning experience via the Internet, may or may not be supported by government funds, and may or may not be accredited. They have been in existence for quite some time but have begun to expand and now offer programs from kindergarten to the twelfth grade. Virtual schools must meet the same accreditation standards as any other type of school that is a member of the Advanc-ED organization. Advanc-ED uses a set of research-based standards and a clearly identified process as guides to help schools continuously improve. Advanc-ED recently implemented the newly formed standards where schools must meet high standards, engage in continuous improvement, and demonstrate quality assurance through external review. There are seven standards linked to research that improves student achievement: (1) Vision and Purpose; (2) Governance and Leadership; (3) Teaching and Learning; (4) Documenting and Using Results; (5) Resources and Support Systems; (6) Stakeholder Communications and Relationships; and (7) Commitment to Continuous Improvement. Although the continuous improvement process emphasizes the involvement of all stakeholders, the leadership of any school is ultimately responsible for making certain that standards are met. In this article, issues associated with each of the seven Advanc-ED standards are raised as it pertains to the formal leadership role in the school. The discussion is provided not as a comprehensive list of issues impacting leadership, but as a catalyst for further discussion and the potential need for subsequent changes in policies and practices impacting the continuous school improvement process.
Descriptors: Educational Improvement, Quality Control, Leadership, Virtual Classrooms, Electronic Learning, Internet, Accreditation (Institutions), Standards, Educational Policy, Educational Practices, Leadership Effectiveness
Kansas State University, College of Education. 1100 Mid-Campus Drive, 006 Bluemont Hall, Manhattan, KS 66506. Tel: 785-532-5525; Fax: 785-532-7304; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://coe.ksu.edu/EdConsiderations
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A