March 2008 Up Front

The viral nature of technology
As social networking and online learning become -- in techie lingo -- “viral,” it’s becoming impossible to ignore the many implications these twin phenomena are having for schools.

What’s most interesting, however, is how this technological wave is influencing school administrators and board members, in mostly good ways. Consider these recent stories we saw ...

Virtual charter schools
Virtual schools operate in 18 states from Colorado to Pennsylvania and enroll more than 90,000 students, according to the North American Council for Online Learning. But a debate is brewing over whether cyber charters offer more than home schooling at taxpayer expense.

In late December, an appeals court ordered the state of Wisconsin to stop funding the 800-student Wisconsin Virtual Academy, saying it violated the state’s open enrollment, charter school, and teacher licensing laws. The decision, which was the first of its kind in the nation, could shape laws in other states as well. 

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