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Online learning on District 88 agenda

December 9, 2010
By Kremena Spengler Staff Writer

NEW ULM - The District 88 Board of Education will consider an online learning proposal by High School Co-Principal Mark Bergmann at its meeting tonight.

Online learning is defined by state law as "an interactive course or program that delivers instruction from a teacher to a student by computer; is combined with other traditional delivery methods that include frequent student assessment and may include actual teacher contact time; and meets or exceeds state academic standards."

In a document to be shared with the board, Bergmann explains that online learning is needed to:

increase the range of offerings;

create an individual learning path;

accommodate scheduling needs;

prepare for college course work; and

provide support in the following situations: graduation date has passed; teen parenting; credit recovery; drug recovery; social issues with friends or school; and education access (home bound, hospitalized, other medical reasons).

Bergmann's proposal envisions four phases of online learning, with courses geared toward credit recovery; remediation; preparing students for post-secondary options; and maintaining curriculum.

The recommendation is that these phases be implemented over the next five years.

Bergmann also lists ways to fund online curriculum writing and compensate teachers: potentially using staff development funds, community grants, dollars generated through satellite program revenue, purchasing curriculum through established providers; and compensatory options such as night/summer schools and overload or in-load courses.

After outlining existing online options, Bergmann recommends meeting the more specific needs of local students and developing courses that meet Dist. 88 standards.

The board meets at 7 p.m. at the District Administrative Center (DAC).



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