Friday, November 17, 2006

WCON- Reach out and Touch Someone by Janel

Ways to communicate online...

Hands on experience with
moodle, email, im, chat, discussion thread, chatrooms, whiteboard, voip, video conferencing, web conferencing, blogs, wiki, elluminate, skype

Skype- loaded into a network in less then 5 minutes, computer to computer is free, can call landline for free as well, recently bought out by ebay, originated in Belgium, works on dialup,

Elluminate- conference software, can also share the screen and more.

WCON -David Warlick Keynote Speaker by Janel

David Warlick- Landmark Project
(I have seen this guy at the NECC conference in San Diego adn have resources from that) EXCELLENT

"The iliterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn adn relearn."

Online handouts-
Blog with: redefine,literacy, warlick

We spend too much time teaching kids to use paper when we need to teach them how to use light.

Our job as educators is to prepare students for a future we cannot describe.

We should STOP integrating technology and start integrating literacy. INFORMATION LITERATE. We need to teach our kids how to teach themselves.

Wikipedia vs Encyclopedia (this is not a competition) each have different strengths. The encyclopedia is published by experts but is not as updated. The wikipedia is published by anyone, but is VERY current. Each has a different strength and use.

Reading as a literacy needs to expand to a range of skills including exposing truth. (find it, decode it, critically evaluate it, organize it into personal digital libraries) Kids start with informaiton that is billions of "pages" big. Being a digital detective. uncover the truth behind the information.

Math as a literacy. You ned to understand the language of numbers. Two things have dramatically changed the world of numbers. There are a lot more of them out there. There are thousands and they are digital. EXAMPLE- earthquake search thing. APPLICATION is the second thing. Applications have become more important as technology has become more commonplace.

Languages of technical areas become less important. Music tools for example. You can compose without formal training in music based on sound, technology and music programs.

Anatomy of the long tail. Books, music, movies that don't sell enough to be sold in a store. But the long tail provides a market online for us to produce things and make them available to others. Huge amounts of content made available this way.

Classroom Blogging- published two hours after done writing. self published and will upload the book in Word, saved as a pdf, library of congress stuff, made covers in photoshop, uploaded them, asks how much you want to make $3.00. they said OK we can sell it for $20.00. They make a webpage for it. They then accept credit cards and print and ship on demand. Interesting... look at this... Very cool.

Teach kids to be effective and responsive producers of materials. Everyone has something to say and do. The long tail doesn't make a living, but it is a nice supplement.

Writing expands into expressing ideas compellingly.

Expand our notions of literacy
1. Exposing truth
2. Employing logic
3. Express ideas compellingly
4. ETHICS (love and protect the truth)

-seeks to express the truth
-do no harm
-be accountable
-respect and protect the information and its infrastructure

Stop integrating technology, redefine literacy and integrate that.

We see technology, kids see information. Information is at the center of their focus NOT technology. We need to concentrate more on the new information landscape and less on the machines.

How we go about convincing people that we need to retool education in this country.

Funny Internet cartoon-
You have reached the end of the internet. You will have to turn around, Use your back button to do so.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

WCON- Organizational Readiness by Janel

Who is here?
New Holstein-looking to implement online learning classes in one department
Menomonee Area SD- planning for online learning last 3 years, board policies, etc
Janesville- has a planning grant for a charter virtual
Westfield- initial research stage of online learning
Sun Prairie- looking at online learning for a planning grant some time in the future
Milwaukee High School- looking at online learning
CESA 3- Looking at professional development online opportunities
CESA 11- Consortium of 29 schools that ar elooking at online learning
Hayward- HS staff is doing hybrid courses
New London- School of Online Marketing with an online component
Arbor Vitae- GT kids doing online learning
CESA 6- Professional Development
CESA 12- Creating Distance Learning Network

Online Curriculum
-Where do you get it?
-What is its quality?
-Do we buy it or develop it ourselves?
-Purchase curriculum only or a teacher too?
-Do we do synchronous or asynchronous curriculum?

Policy and Procedure
-services to provide- guidance, libraries, etc
-extracurriculars online
-preplanning with students using WiscCareers and learning styles inventory

Technical Infrastructure
-Access to internet ready computers with minimal tech specs
-proxy servers, filtering systems, popup blockers
-student email access
-technical staff to assist local teachers and students
-accomodations for after hours access

EMAIL-- Student names can't go out over the Internet according to CIPA--- check into this.

Funding Strategies
-Operating budgets from multiple sources
-Grants: state and federal
-Potential sources of federal funding
-Funds preserved by holding onto students who might otherwise leave

WCON- Online Course Evaluations- Exploratorium by Janel

presented by Appleton eSchool, iQ Academy, Wisconsin Virtual School, Madison Virtual Campus

Appleton eSchool Connie Radtke-Content Demo
2D Art Examples
-Scan in work or taking digital pictures
-At the beginning of each module it identifies the tasks they are going to be doing and the approx time it will take them to complete
-Students have pace charts and due dates as well
-Flash drawings and ask about what various artists were trying to sketch out. Game format, etc. -Virtual tours to museums

Don't like this session jumping to a new one...

WCON Supplementing Curriculum with Online Options by Janel

Presented by Sue Steiner Keil eSchool

-application process is through the guidance office
-primarily purchase from Florida Virtual School

Why do students enroll?
health problems
-want a challenge
-scheduling conflicts
-drop outs
-alternative to expulsion
-at risk
-flex schedules
-transfer students
-transient students
-low enrollment courses
-out of sequence courses

Quality Online courses
-QUALITY teacher is number one!!!!
-consistent organization from one class to the next important to consider this when setting protocols

How do you know students do their own work
-proctored exams
-frequent communication
-teacher discernment

Tools to use when developing online courses
- allows you to compare course management systems and it will provide you details and comparisons for them. This is a VERY useful tool to use. Tons of great information here.
- Moodle
- Online Course Evaluation Project (also on edutools) this helps you to look at content providers AND most useful for the categories that are listed on what items are important to look at in curriculum and more. VERY NICE. Put in a rubric that you develop for evaluative purposes
- Ncrel and Research projects portion of edutools
- National Repository of Online Courses- high school and ap. Growing. Quality courses.

Supplementary Content
-adds diversity even in F2F classes
-high quality and content beyond the means of the teacher
-addresses various learning styles
-multimodal learning
-why reinvent the wheel

Course Vendors
-put an rfp together
-piloted a few vendors the first year
-developed some locally developed courses as well
-FVS they have course demos so you can look at lessons from many of their courses

Supplementary Providers
-Can license all of these individuals as well
-United Streaming
-Brain Pop
-Get A Clue
-SAS inSchool
-Horizon Wimbda/Wimba (voice email sending)- foreign language, $25 a license
-Geometer's Sketchpad

Web Conferencing Software
-Elluminate (highest quality)- look into this!!!
--question to ask- is it VoIP or the Internet AND a phone line. Not sure what she said here... investigate further

Learning Objects
-mini lessons that are out there
- Fox Valley Technical College Learning Objects are all together online
- WiscNet

Wikis and Blogs

Virtual Field Trips and Projects

Advantages and Disadvantages
-pay for high quality content
-CD/DVD supplements to textbooks
-ABILITY to CUSTOMIZE (check this if you want to be able to add units or lessons)
-updating and support offered by vendors
-Are you purchasing courses or modules? This is important.
-upfront vs. ongoing costs
-cost per student or one cost for course
technology issues

-who hosts it?
-security issues
-intellectual copyright issues (if teachers develop) can't copy and paste
-ada compliance
-licensing agreements
-infrastructure support
-content fit the management system?

Teacher training
-need an ongoing mentor
-monthly staff development
-tech support
-other trainings
-Learning Point Associates NCREL- great online 6 week course for online teacher facilitation courses, offered in January, 3 grad credits with Cardinal Stritch, contact Sue Steiner about enrolling in this course

Student Considerations
-orientation course for students
-is their a teacher at the other end of the course
-quality directions
-tech support

-not all text based, needs multimedia

Start Small
-just go with a few sources at first
-resource that supports a large number of media rich sources
-decide whether to buy, license or build your own
-consider consortia for purchasing power (NL has indicated an interest in partnering with us)
-need to establish buy-in, very important

As far as grants and sustaining go- perpetual licenses are the key!! May not want to consider the rent a course options because they require continual monetary support

WCON- Keynote speaker by Janel

Susan Patrick: NACOL: CEO and President

More technology in our toothpaste factories measuring effectiveness than there is in our schools today.

40% of the high schools in the US don't have PA or advanced classes. This is horrible since we live in a knowledge based economy.

The Tipping Point- get that book

NEA Guide to online teaching for teacher union information. This is a great tool showing how they support online learning so the union doesn't fight so much.

Virginia county- gave all students a laptop (26,000) and still spent less than the state average because they got rid of the financial support for the old school model and invested in the new one.

NGA Gates Foundation Study just published. Challenges all students to complete college preparatory coursework whether they want to go to college or not. This reverses our thinking.

National- what is happening in elearning
#1 reason for offering online curriculum in hs in the US is because the course is not currently offered in their high school.
#2 reason offered by districts is to meet the specific needs of student groups

For policy making and presentations- get all the things you need to make on an index card
1-online learning expands options
2- online learning is rapidly growing (30% annual enrollment)
3-Research shows it is equal or better to traditional academic environment (based on federal study of student achievement scores)
4- Susan Loews. It improves teaching. Rethink content and strategies and go through significant training.

Measures of success
Are online students engaged?
What are the completion rates? (95% FVS, 90% AeS, 70% HS grad rate)
AP exam scores (national 60%, FVS 70%)

If we could enroll all of the kids who wanted online courses today there would be enough to everyone. There are 12 states, primarily in the Northeast, that are not in tune with online learning either locally or statewide.

2006 what's new
-Michigan requirement for all students to have an online learning experience (20 hours or more of intense)
-Georgia allows cybercharter programs
-New state led programs in many states opening up
-CA opening charter schools
-Nebraska distance ed law
-Washington developing guidelines for online learning
-Corporate America 30% do online training, will go to 50% in a few years time

We still spend money on globes. How many college programs buy globes?
Libraries are still spending money on subscriptions, how many students just go online to get the information
Text books- or laptops??? Which makes more sense, looking at 4 year leases. $250 a year. (1.11 per student per day)

System design- we need to focus on how we design the world, because things can only go as fast and as far as they are designed to do so.

Last time the high school system has been redesigned? 1905. Decided that they did not have to prepare all kids for college. Systemic effort to sort kids so 75% would go to industrial jobs and 25% would go to college. Valued efficiency above all else. Bell system, lock step kids by age NOT by how fast they learn, no choices, 30% drop out. 26% make it to 2 years of college. This model does not work.

Majority of drop outs 88% had passing grades, 69% are not motivated or disenfranchised, 66% would have worked harder if more had been demanded, At Risk kids. Losing these kids in our schools

We start schools as a question mark and end as a period.

WCON- Opening Session by Janel

WCON conference is the only one in the state that focuses exclusively on K12 online learning

Appleton e-school skit- focused on what it was like to look at and take an online class, oral exams and phone call office hours


Appleton eSchool and IQ Academy parent and student panel

-Parents feel that online classes allow them to be more involved than traditional classes
-Students felt that one on one communication was better online than traditionally
-Students liked that they could take required courses online to leave room for the advanced and elective courses they wanted to take in school
-Cheating- eSchool requires proctored final exam that students must pass can be taken in Appleton, at a library, in a local school, etc

I had more in this post but experienced Internet problems with the connections and lost the original post.

WCON Conference by Janel

Janel attended the WCON (Wisconsin Collaborative Online Network)
Conference in Fondulac at Marion College
November 16-17, 2006

I have a flash drive with most of the powerpoints from this conference on them (presented by Appelton eSchool and Kiel)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Marcia's Summarizing Statements from the Dallas Conference

Summary—and my opinions

Parents are an important factor in a student’s success with online courses. Only one of the sessions I attended stated that the parents are not expected to actively participate. The rest expect the parents to motivate/encourage students, as well as make sure the students are logging in and working in their classes. Some expect regular interaction with the teachers.

Students say traditional classes are boring. I partially agree—nothing can be exciting all of the time. I think the problem is that schools are designed to provide a general education, and this education is paced according to the needs of the “middle” students—leaving the gifted and talented unchallenged/underchallenged, and the lower students lost and confused. I think this is what the students really mean when they say classes are “boring.” I can see how online classes would be more stimulating. Students are able spend as much or as little time as they need to learn individually, as opposed to a daily 40 minute classroom experience. Furthermore, the students are quite “connected,” and online classes would be appealing.

As all of the presenters stated, online classes are not for every student. The students who spoke to us stated that they (and their friends) thought the classes were easy, although the presenters stated that the classes are not easy at all. Online classes require responsibility as well as motivation, and the students need interaction with their teacher, according to one of the students.

Some things that might inadvertently help students succeed…
The fact that students choose to take an online course gives them some ownership. They receive a computer, and all the components necessary for their class, and this is “cool.” They can set their own time schedule, and they know they can contact their teacher (and they know how to contact their teacher) if they need help. They do not have the distractions that happen in traditional classes, and there are no face to face classmates who can bully or tease them. There is some freedom in the anonymity—if you said/wrote something embarrassing during a group discussion, you don’t have to face the others all day.

Mary Rich, one of the students who spoke to us, made a point I hadn’t considered. When discussion distractions at school, she said, “There are distractions at home, too, but they are YOUR distractions and you know how to handle them.”

“A good classroom teacher is not necessarily a good online teacher.” This was repeated throughout the sessions.
Teachers need a great deal of initial and ongoing training and support, and need a mentor for guidance. They also need a mentor or a trustworthy group with whom they can “vent” confidentially and to combat/conquer frustration.
There is a “time factor” that will have to be considered, not only with training teachers, but with managing their online classes. The symposium attendees who were not teachers generally thought that online classes/teachers actually save time, but those who teach online stated that, initially, it takes more time, and eventually becomes about the same amount of time as a teacher would spend in a traditional class. Most classes contain at least ten, but not more than twenty, students. One group allows a veteran online teacher to accept more students.

Starting a Virtual School
I received some excellent information, and even a worksheet to help plan a virtual school.

Plan, plan, plan!

Creating policy is very important—have all of your ducks in a row and you will avoid many problems.

All presenters stated that you need to find a partner to help financially. It is important to determine at the beginning which partner will be responsible for providing each aspect of the virtual school. Again, planning—know exactly “who” is responsible for “what.”

A man from Colorado told us that they were creating their own curriculum materials, because the cost of purchasing curriculum is prohibitive. He and his team are quite computer-savvy, and have access to many community/business resources we do not have. At this time, I do not feel I have the ability or knowledge to create an online course that would have the “bells and whistles” of a prepackaged curriculum. The little bits of these courses that I saw were truly fabulous. According to the presenters, there are all kinds of prepackaged programs, and some of the least expensive are basically correspondence courses. “You get what you pay for” was the phrase they used, and said it definitely applied to prepackaged curriculum programs. They suggested that whatever program is chosen, it should be one that can be altered to meet state standards, and can be updated.

All presenters suggested that starting small was the best way to begin; it’s better to be successful with something small, than have something large that is just OK. A successful experience will fuel progressively large ventures.

“Yes, but…” or “Yes, and…”

During this symposium, I think Chic Thompson has managed to change our way of thinking. Instead of thinking a negative “Yes, but…,” we are thinking “Yes, and…” and seeking the positive. Turn things around—look at “What would we never do?” Sometimes, changing your viewpoint makes all the difference.

I went to this symposium because I wanted to see what other people are doing with online education, and how they are doing it. I wanted to learn what others did “wrong”(in hopes that we could avoid it), as well as what they did “right.” As a teacher, I wanted to see the quality of the curriculum available, and I wanted to discover what I would need to do to become an online teacher. (The only thing I’d still like to do is view the Language Arts courses from various programs.)

I left the symposium feeling that a virtual school is something that we CAN create, and it will be successful. The “road” to that virtual school is going to be difficult, with many decisions and a ton of planning…and it will be a great learning experience for everyone. And… I am willing to be one of the teachers,… but I have to test drive the curriculum first!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Links from the Dallas Conference

Link to information about What A Great Idea and Chic Thompson

Companies that specialize in virtual school products:
--Pearson digital learning
--Virtual School K12 Programs
--ecollege virtual Sage, online curriculum publishers

Virtual Schools that presented
--Minnesota Virtual Academy, Kim Ross Superintendent Houston, MN
--IQ Academies at Wisconsin, Lisa McClure See Marketing Ideas Sheet. Very useful. (In Janel's file) #1
--Michigan Virtual University Online Experience Guidelines (useful framework- In Janel's files) #2

Presentation Links
--Starting a Virtual School Program for Your District- The Virtual Campus Rapid City, SD:
--Virtual Veterans Top ten lists (interesting stuff- in Janel's file) #3
--Nacols research trends and statistics sheet with links to a lot of research (in Janel's file) #4
--Nacol's paper Virtual Schools and 21st Century Skills (in Janel's file) #5
--How to Start A Virtual School PreConference Packet (in Janel's file) #7
--Keeping Pace with K12 Online Learning State Level policy and practice book (in Janel's file) #8
--Quality School Checklist from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (in Janel's file #9)

Next year's conference is in Louisville Kentucky. November 4-6.2007

Critical Issues Relative to Charter Virtual School by Deb

Critical Issues Relative to Charter Virtual School
Submitted by deb Gerard

In considering what is most important, the following come to mind:

We need to nail down specifically what it is we are going to do-exactly what kind of school we are looking to develop (and it has to be more detailed than “charter virtual school”!)
Determine who our target students will be specifically.
What we will offer those targeted students.
If we determine to buy curriculum, we will need to make decisions on what curriculum and from where
Once we determine what we want specifically, we need to determine WHO and what we need to bring it about. That includes:
personnel and how we use them,
policy and what it needs to include,
student management and how and by whom that will be accomplished,
marketing and how it will be done and by whom and
how we will evaluate (DPI just told us that we must always make evaluation a part of the original plan for anything!).
The role of our current staff
How and through what medium(s) staff will be trained once we decide their role
There needs to be a specific timeline for this project over the course of the next few months as the next deadline for the grant is not all that far away!
We need to set the next meeting and soon!

New London Collaboration

Joe Pomrening principal at New Londaon high school contacted us to see if we would be interested in collaborating on some of the curriculum. They are writing a planning grant for a charter school that has a virtual school as one of its components. He indicated that a collaboration with Keil or Appleton is $100,000 for each of two years. His phone number is 920-982-8420 x1001. He attended the Dallas virtual school symposium as well.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Janel's Overall List of Ten Important Concepts from the conference

1. Policies- we need to research policies like mad. There are many things to consider in the set up of our policies and how they will effect the outcome and viability adn effectiveness of our school.

2. Curriculum options- We have to decide if we are going to buy courses and provide our own teachers, have our teachers develop the curriculum adn teach it and sell our curriculum to others, have our teachers teach in a consortium and "exchange" seats (Wisconsin e-network, private companies), purchase on an individual course basis per student like virtual school

3. Community building is important. ways to use the technology and "new space" to create a school community of interactive learners, community, teachers and parents. Therewere some really good ideas of how to accomplish this.

4. Marketing ideas. Marketing the school is very important. Getting training inthis and being able tobrainstorm and network is key. Ideas of getting your name, mission and WHAT IT IS YOU DO out there.

5. Quality Measurementand program evaluation Online progam perceiver by Appleton Virtual School is a great way to measure program effectiveness and monitor what is going on. This shouldbe builtin.

6. Chic Thompson Ways to brainstorm and develop yes and habits. The power of opposite thinking when solving a problem. Turning it into opportunity. What would we never do?

7. Resources Use SREB resources. Lots there.. Also our worthiest competitors will be out best allies.

8. Concentrate on LEARNING not the medium of instruction

9. Student Management System- the current "traditional" (skyward) system will not work. It needs to have many moreoptions and tracking communication piece. This is key so make sure to research both it and the adminstration of it well.

10. Teacher and Student Preparation All teachers and mentors should have to take an online course first. All studnets should have an orientation course so they know how the system works and to troubleshoot technology problems (add-ins, speed, etc) before they are in an actual class.

Break Out 2 Tues-Collaboration by Deb

Focus on people not places in virtual world
Lots of self-organizers
Weekly collaboration meeting-always agenda and purpose
Comments from new teacher:
Connection is critical
Sharing of best practices
Consensus building-unified front (great idea!)
Broadens perspective
Confidence builder knowing you can talk together

Special Ed collaboration:
Not a lot of guidelines in place nationally
Part of SE job is assigned to VS-come together F2F weekly though also email
Sometimes more difficult to get things done and the collaboration helps here
Lots of discussions relative to policies
Principal involved in meetings
Pulled into the team and give input on what they believe policy should reflect
Weekly collaboration with adm
Sense in which “we are there for each other”
Collaboration has to be a required weekly thing-part of the job
Collaboration restores community
Marriage at a distance
Three legged stool-people/technology/processes all under the umbrella of purpose
SIT process:
Student Improvement Team-meet monthly collaboratively
Teachers email one week prior on student strengths/weaknesses
Can help all students because of brainstorming even though working on individual student
Can effect change quickly by calling attention to parent and providing tools and methods and very individualized
Part-time contracted teachers are assigned collaboration (well worthwhile)
Mentor for each new teacher
Teachers add informal collaborations with students (ie. 5AM 2 times a week) can build bonds even without sight
Informal parent collaboration: Can deal with issues but will need to address with administration
Analyzing student work: Talking about grading in the same way
Important to know how to do appropriate feedback/communication virtually
Handout: Rubric-apply this rubric to collaboration meetings
Much of the collaboration is NOT administration driven-can give guidance and support and wait to be invited in!
Key to collaboration is that it is safe and secure to express and agree/disagree

Break Out 3: Data and by Deb

FLVS overview:
36,000 students enrolled-looks like a district now
School House concept within this district-now have 11 houses with 45 teachers each
35% from EEcon
Wisc is beginning to look like this within partnerships on a smaller basis
Driving factors:
Accountability-proving that we do what we say we do-every three months
Funding-only funded for students that is successful (d or above)-ongoing enrollment
If students take this class after school day, state pays for it; if during school day, district pays for it(1/6 of cost/student)
Less than 500 students, can do data on spreadsheet
Ideal model is that the FTE is never received by the district-it goes directly to the state
Hierarchical approach
Accountability: state-district-school-class,
operations: students-parents-teachers-counselor-adm) makes this very transparent
The system:
Diff between leading data and laggard data
Leading-making sure you can impact students in front of you today
Laggard-when data still impacts the new students when designed to impact the students who WERE there
Can’t make decisions outside of data

Rolling enrollment-no beginning or ending-serving as needed
Wait lists-a way to provide for all kids to get what they want and to start when they want-most are placed within a week or so, no longer than 3-4 weeks (if that long, will hire a new teacher)
Kids willing to wait max of 4 weeks but evidence shows that longer wait results in higher % of drop-outs
Kids have “weigh factors” (mission is to serve the ones at most need-impoverished, minority, medical, etc)
Student progress and communication:
Looking if students are on schedule or not and when they submitted work-after 3 weeks, no longer a student usually
Principal can access data as well as teachers to determine what is going on
Teacher dashboard-gives teacher all the class information
So much data provided and it is integrated daily to the other management systems
All contact is logged and all can be sort (common comments so all can see it)
28 days to decide if they are going to be a student of that course-if within, WD-no grade--if over, WD-F
Benchmarking data
Trends-Looking at big picture (year to year) data
Retention data
Accountability data
Students who are 65% complete in a course, there is an online survey to evaluate the course!!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Tues Breakout 3- 5 Myths of the Mind by Janel


1. Your mind is that single voice in your head.
-concious internal talk is not all you are
-mind is much more conplex and most are unconscious resources
-learning starts by paying attention and then skill/knowledge becomes natural
-difficult to explain thought process of things that become natural
-awash with data, bt not necessarily to make it conscious
-Things you learn so well that are natural become your basic skills, fast to use, and almost invisible and INDIVISIBLE
-Conscious thought is for the HARD problems, it builds on all of our unconscious- what is already there.

2. Minds are like a computer
-old model- computers have processors andstograge and education makes this faster and stronger and fills the mind with seperate data
-new model- the mind is an association engine, expert minds identify different patterns and see things differently

3. Expert minds just know more than non-expert minds
-professors often know less facts than their students
-nonexperts do not have the associative and problem solving skills that experts do
-all human expertise seems divisible into 10-20 big ideas. same types of structure of knowledge with a lot of stuff tucked in underneath
-the structure of knowledge is subconscious
-experts have had a lot of practice
-most experts are VERY self critical
-get teacher and material experts be able to sncourage kids and guide them rather than frustrate them

4. Your mind works like other minds
-different minds learn best in different ways
-ALL minds can learn more than we expect

5. Talent makes things easier
-American peculiarity- if I were good at X, it would be great, because it would be EASY
-other cultures- mastery is a matter of work not talent
-practice and hard work make mastery
-obsession makes mastery
-mastery is about fluency-the unconcious process

Use flexibility and technology to make the vast amount of work required to make kids masters. HOW DO WE DO IT?

Talent allows you to do truly extraordinary things with enormous effort. Your staff has an incredible amount of unconsious mastery to utilize. Talent only gives you permission.

Tues BreakOut #2- Online Professional Development by Janel

Professional Development pitfalls
Quick fixes rather than systemic
Don’t utilize data
Happiness quotient
Insufficient time
Sit and get
Initiative overload
Pd as frill
Expert dissemination

Barriers to Online Teaching
Online Textbooks
Banker Design
I'm Already a teachers
Practice Patience
Presence not predominance
quantity vs quality

Online Readiness Checklist

Monday notes 5 by Marcia

Session: Effective Methods for Training, Supporting, and Retaining Quality Online Instructors
Presenters: Lisa Watkins, Sandra Richards, Jamie Sachs--Georgia Virtual School (state funded)
According to presenters, Georgia Virtual School has the online program for what it does best—train, support, and retain teachers

To be successful, you must first determine what the term means.

Defining success:

Look at completion rates (“successful” completion rate = 70% score)
Compare standardized test scores
Compare instrucxtional techniques
Teacher evaluations
Student evaluations

Factors that Affect Success:
Teacher standards
Teacher training
Instructional techniques
Teacher evaluation
Student support

Georgia Virtual School has these online teacher standards:
National and State Standards
Organizational Standards

Georgia standards
Instructor manual
SREB Task Force Standard Development
Teacher training (ongoing)

Teacher forum

Application for online teaching positions through Georgia Virtual School is a rigorous process, and entrance into the training program does not guarantee employment.

Teacher Training
Based on set standards
Provides an opportunity for teachers to perform as online learners
Provides the opportunity for teachers to learn the pedagogy of online teaching and learning and the technology requirements for teaching online
Mirrors expectations set in virtual student classrooms

Veteran teachers develop the courses for Georgia Virtual School; Georgia DPI owns the content of the courses.

Georgia Virtual School hires teachers based on need—there are no full time teachers.
There are three semesters, and three pacing models (4 week semester, 16 week semester, 13 week semester). (Explanation was requested several times by several people, and we still did not understand this.)

Questions regarding funding—for example, does funding follow student?—were answered, “That gets worked out among theirselves(sic).”

Fall and SpringTeacher Training
“Desire to Learn” is their trsaining program

Content Requirements:
Well defined learning objectives
Clear and organized content
Varied assignments and assessments that address learning objectives

Instructor techniques
Address individual learning styles through:
Course content
Live chats—“Elluminate” program
Other communication methods
All available sources

Create a community of learners by:
Providing opportunities for collaboration and interaction
Providing timely and targeted feedback
Encouraging communication

Successful completion=mentoring
School provides access, Georgia Virtual School provides materials
Whoever trains your teachers, be sure to--
model the teaching and dealing with problems
relate to standards set for teacher
have experienced mentors for each teacher
have new teachers shadow veteran online teachers (and teach a unit of the course)


Monday Notes 4 by Marcia

Marcia’s notes…
Monday, November 6 3:00 PM
SESSION: Supporting the Online Instructor: Best Practices in Teacher-Training, Community-Building, and Professional Development Online
Presenters: Jo Wagner and Robin Winder, Florida Virtual School
Janna Vega and Jennifer Quintero, Idaho Digital Learning Academy

What do teachers need to be effective online teachers? It’s all about relationships and support.

This presentation states the professional development and support offered by Florida Virtual School and Idaho Digital Learning Academy

Basic Outline:
Florida Virtual School:
Annual Face to Face Conference
Ongoing Professional Development Online
Outstanding Performance Tool with Bonus Pay
Training and Mentoring
Idaho Digital Learning Academy:
Support Network
Face to Face Faculty Conference—one week long

Train new teachers and assemble veteran faculty
New technology and resources
Online teaching practices
Online instructional design
State standards
Up-to-date research of online education
Special topics, such as cyberbullying
Team Building! A sense of community…

Ø Teachers are paid for the week, and paid for travel.

Ongoing Professional Development Online
Online training for teachers
o Using Blackboard
o Instructional design
o Formatting and file size
o Creating assessments
o Structuring a course
o Screen design
Online Professional Development Course
o Required annually for all teachers
o Specific focus each year
§ Using digital media online
§ Creating a classroom community online
College credit is always available for the conference and online course

“Outstanding Performance” Measurement Tool

A rubric to measure and guide teacher performance and practice
Clear communication of expectations
Opportunity to earn “bonus pay” for outstanding performance

Students also rate teachers.
Semester classes are 18 weeks.
A score of 32 qualifies the teacher for “bonus pay”--$25 per student
Bonus pay is available each semester

Areas evaluated include:
Ø Quality of feedback
Ø Communication
Ø Teacher’s participation in professional development
Ø Administrative requirements (reports, student grades, up-to-date class schedule, etc.)
Ø Student evaluation of relationship with teacher

Student is charged $50 per semester.
A 9 week course pays the same as an 18 week course.
Teacher is paid for all students who stay after two weeks.
Support Network—Idaho

Support provided:

Online principals—assigned by subject area (principals take care of problem if student is cheating, for example)
Site coordinators—in student’s home school
Regional coordinators—coordinate individual schools
Technical support specialist—full time 8-5
Team leaders
Content specialists—experts on content
Content area teams—a sense of community
Provide teachers an arena to practice modifying content without doing any “real damage”
Facilitate regular, open communication within a subject area about current issues, “how to” questions, or future development ideas
· Content Area team leaders
o Mentor new teachers
o Act as communication hubs
o Facilitate the work and administration of the team
· Constant Communication
o Email
o Instant messaging
o Online Instructor Handbook/Workbook
o “How to” guides for technology use

Training and Mentoring
Ø Establish and model relationships with students
Ø Support teacher development
Ø Institutional support
Ø Community building
Ø Mentoring—improves instructional performance, provide teacher support

Online Training courses—45 days long?
Ø New hire training course
Ø Graded and facilitated by the mentors
Ø Models effective feedback and communication
Ø Content area orientation

Timely Trainings
Ø Mentor corners
Ø Rapid reminder
Ø Monday Mentor Minutes
Ø Thirsty Thursdays
Ø Telephone
Ø Web conferences
All of these are communications aimed at correcting specific problems

Program Accountability
Ø Monthly checklists
Ø Contact logs
Ø Mentee surveys
Ø Teacher retention

Teacher teaching 135 credits is considered full time
Maximum 25 students in class
Majority of staff begin as adjuncts
Currently have 9000 teachers on waiting list
94% teacher retention

Lessons Learned
Ø Mentoring and training teachers is critical to success
Ø Set expectations very early regarding training commitment
Ø Build in accountability at all levels
Ø Simulate student learning via teacher training
Ø Use “just in time” information delivery to reduce frustration
Ø Allocate human and financial resources for mentoring program—this is critical
Ø Work in “chunks,” not chips
Ø Pace charts for students are given to parents


Monday Notes 3 by Marcia

Marcia’s notes…
Monday, November 6 1:45
Session: Structured For Success: Online Lessons That Work For Every Learner

Dr. Steven Guttentag Connections Academy Sr. V.P. and founder
Patricia Hoge Connections Academy
Camissa French Arizona Connections Academy

This session was basically a sales pitch for Connections Academy.

Connections Academy has full time students in 11 states and is asynchronous, and uses print and online resources. Students use a textbook. One semester equals 90 hours, or .5 Carnegie Units (this was not explained, but it is what students earn for “completing” each semester class—I don’t know if the students must “ successfully complete” a class, or what score must be achieved to successfully complete a course.) The Connections Academy works with Glencoe, Pearson and other publishers. There was a reference to “Wisconsin Observance Days,” and it was not explained.

Basic information:

Parents are involved with their students and the teachers, and are expected to implement and motivate.

Connections Academy works on a five part model.
Lesson components of that model:
Getting Started—access prior knowledge, journaling, graphic organizers, predict, infer, draw conclusions
Instruction—movies (interactive), streaming movies, textbook, CA developed activities
Activity—interactive “itext,” workbook or web extension, projects, science lab
Review—studymate games, text quizzes, online quickchecks
Assignments (Assessments?)—dropbox essays, supportive website, discussion board, online quickcheck, online quiz, unit tests

Monday Notes 2 by Marcia

Marcia’s notes…
MONDAY November 6 10:30
SESSION: How to Make Your Online Classroom a Success
Presenters from Florida Virtual School:
Jamie Nagle
Anna Coppola
(My comments are written in italics in parentheses—Marcia.)

Basic Outline:

How do you make the connection with your students?
Use what you have
Use the technology
Use your colleagues

1. Use what you have

What did you do in the traditional school classroom that helped you make a connection with your students?
Communicate with your students!
Phone each student. Introduce yourself, your expectations, and rules. Ask student about his/her hobbies, sports, job, etc. (I think it would be wise to chart this information for future reference when communicating with student.)
Email students regarding assignments, or just to “check in” with them. Always make positive comment first.
Phone students, again with a positive message first.
Set deadlines and follow up. If student falls behind, make contact. Find out why student is behind, and help him/her get back on track. Flexibility works both ways—student may be having a bad week, and you need to work with him/her. Accidents, injuries, family problems can happen to anyone, including teachers.
Front Page—make it personal, and update it regularly. Students need to know you are a person, too. Example: Tell students what you did this week.

Let the students know that you are willing to do “this much” for them, and you need them to do “that much.”

2. Use the technology

What technologies do you have that can help you make a connection with your students?

Get a guest speaker—use conference calling (students can come in to hear), or program which students can call in to hear. Students want interaction, a chance to socialize—make sure they can ask questions of the speaker. (Guest speakers show students that their learning is real, and is useful/necessary in various occupations.)
“Elluminate” has a voice over feature, works in real time, and you and your students can interact.
Instant Messenger—students can easily contact teacher
Students can use podcasts to show what they’ve learned
MSN has voice over feature
Do the things your students are already doing technologically!

3. Use your colleagues

“Don’t try to do it all alone, make a connection with your colleagues. (from slide)

“Sharepoint”—a discussion board for teachers. Share your best practices, help each other with problems.
One of the questions that regularly comes up is
“I’m teaching from home. How do you manage your time, classes, students, and/or content?”

Teachers need to be able to “vent” safely (confidentially).

How to learn more about your students:

Track them, perhaps on a spreadsheet.
Make notes on students. When you contact them, ask what they like, hobbies, etc., and write this information down. If they send you photos, post them on your announcements page.
Call parents—ask them what is neat about their child.
Create a “chat room” for your students. (This could be monitored by creating a blog with submissions posted only after reviewed by teacher.)
Journaling online
There are potential problems with this. Emotionally sensitive material (depressed, bullied) may be written, and a situation may need to be addressed by guidance counselor. (If a child is being abused, authorities must be contacted.) What about confidentiality (students must be able to feel they can trust you, and how will you regain that trust)?

The perfect answer:
“I was very concerned about you, so I contacted this person to make sure you were OK.”

Tues Lunch Speaker- Texas Virtual Students by Janel

Students described their online learning experience as fun and interesting.

1. Things they like: math multiple choice tests easy, figuring stuff out for yourself, liked the ebook, liked that it was self paced,

2. Things they did not like: no notes, no examples in math, teacher interaction is not as great in one case, not enough feedback, not able to see what is wrong on the tests, links were old in the ebook and did not work

3. What would you spend on technology for the traditional school- better computers (apples), better Internet service because its really slow- takes too long,

4. How does it prepare you for your future?- able to spend time on what you are interested in doing. Take core there and have time to explore your interests, self motivation.

5. Teachers are important. Important to know that the teacher is there for her.

6. Use instant messenger in classes. It would be useful.

7. My Space used for kids in the classes where they are grouped by class. They thought it would be a good way to get to know kids and be interactive.

8. Usually there are a lot of things open and going on when they are workingon the online classes.

9. Collaboration, any time anywhere 24/7. Conference rooms to pull people together. Model is different as people are collaborating. Need to determine how we use our spaces and set up our schedules. How will we reach our teachers and students

Monday Notes by Marcia

Marcia’s notes…
Monday, November 6
Welcome and Opening—Susan Patrick President and CEO, North American Council for Online Learning

NACOL Mission: Education, Innovation, and Online Learning
Virtual school offers all students the best education with the best teachers –Susan Patrick
21st Century Assessments for today’s students.
Innovative changes in education—trend of the future.
PQ + CQ > IQ (Passion quotient + curiosity quotient is greater that IQ)

Currently there are147 virtual charter schools in 18 states, and
1/3 of high schools offer elearning.

Rationale: 4 key points favoring online education:
1. Online learning expands options and providing equal access. This levels the “playing field”—all students have access to a vast variety of courses, not just those in larger, financially proficient schools.
2. Online learning is rapidly growing.
3. It is effective.
4. It improves teaching

AP scores up to 10 points higher through online courses.
Seymour (?)Papert—AI tells the story of the steamship.
A quicker way to cross the Atlantic was needed—the steamship was just too slow. In 1952, the rush was on to create a better, faster steamship—and it was created, and it was much faster than the old. However, the jet airplane was also created that year, making the newer, faster steamship obsolete.
Education could be compared to that story.
Are we trying to fix up the old, or should we jump into the new?
The old steamship is a systemic design, and can be improved to a point. The new technology, the jet plane, can go faster than ship, and thus would be the better choice to improve travel time across the Atlantic.

The brick and mortar schoolhouse was created during the Industrial Revolution. Schools were designed to educate students for work in menial jobs, with 25% going on to college.
Currently 26% go on to college.
That brick and mortar schoolhouse is still doing what it was designed to do!

Perhaps it’s time to quit trying to fix the old.
How many students graduate from high school? Overall average is 70%.
52% Latino
56% black

Transformation, not integration is needed—regarding technology.

Allan Jordan—story
A student, who was struggling in class, goes to school door, almost goes in, but turns away. “Why?” asked Jordan. Student said he has to “power down” to go to school—at home online, he has many things going on, but in school, he has to operate on a bell system, antiquated ideas, etc.

Leadership is TIP: trust, integrity, passion
Oliver Wendell Holmes said that a mind stretched to new dimensions never returns to its old dimension. (paraphrased)

President, National Commission on Teaching and America’s future.
Advocacy group for 21st century teaching and learning

Erate grants
10th anniversary of virtual high school in Hudson
In 1995-96, the Erate grant applications were mainly for CD-ROM content—and at that time, everyone thought that CD-ROM would be forever.
In 1998, the grant applications for Internet/web access surpassed those for CD-ROM

The last radical change in education was during the industrial age--graded learning, stand alone content, little boxes inside big boxes (school/classroom)—and we’ll call that Education 1.0
We now need Education 2.0 and3.0
We have the potential to transform education—the new teachers are the ones who grew up with the web/internet, etc.
Should we be the agent of change or target of change?

Data in No Dream Denied book
Accelerated the number of new teachers in the 90s, but also accelerated leavers
Many new teachers leave within the first three years, and after five years, 46% have left.
Teacher turnover is a serious problem.
Why are these new teachers leaving the teaching profession?
1. They feel they were not prepared for conditions/challenges of teaching.
2. They feel isolated—no support.
3. No opportunity for growth was visibly forthcoming—no advancement.

Teachers’ training has not changed, and the teaching “career” is the same—teach the same old thing, year after year, and then retire.

The Generation X, and the Millenials, those who are now in their 20’s, grew up very connected.
They seek collaborative relationships, need mentors, want career advancement—and they don’t find this in the education field.
TV reflects culture and its changes:
Then—“Dr. Kildare”—stand alone hero, individual saves the day
Today—“Gray’s Anatomy”—teamwork is important –teams save the day

Same parallel exists in Perry Mason vs. Law and Order

Key to success is collaborative team work
Superman vs. Pokeman
Flash Gordon vs. Star Trek and NASA (no astronaut went to the moon without teamwork)
The teams are diverse, women involved.

Currently, the teacher dropout rate is higher than student dropout rate.

Where are the advancements in education? We had the stand alone teacher of the50’s, now we have the stand alone teacher in 21st century. This creates three things to be worried about:
While that teacher may be a good teacher, he/she has no colleague to learn from, and so can only be as good as he/she can get alone.
Students are struggling when they have an ineffective teacher
Teacher teaching alone in a flat world cannot develop necessary skills unless we use 21st Century teaching.

Teaching 1.0—Teacher’s job is to stand and deliver content, then test to see if content is captured. All students are taught at the same level. This is what we have been doing for many years. It’s Teach and Test—if they get it, they get it, and if they don’t, they don’t.

Teaching 2.0--Teacher is the Learning Leader
The teacher is a coach, and manages resources. This learning is project based, community centered, the focus is on the learners’ needs, and the students become resources to each other.


↕ ↕
S ↔ P↔S
↕ ↕ ↕
S ↔ S
The problem with this is that the teacher should not be off to the side. The teacher should be learning along with the students, and in doing this, the teacher will be modeling learning, how to form a hypothesis, etc.

Thus, the diagram above would change to show the teacher within the circle as a learning leader, the students become learners, and all participate in a blended environment.

Teaching 3.0 Teacher’s job is to create meaning with students. The focus is on relationships—learners are in an environment without walls. The learners can be anywhere geographically, but still in the same class. The teacher is the learning leader, and keeps the learning structured and focused.
In the drawing for Teaching 2.0, the “walls”—the circle in the diagram, representing the school building, is removed. All continuously learn together, both from their leader, their resources, and each other.

Ideas are presented in the book The Teaching Gap

Prepare teachers by:
using “Teaching Academies” where teachers can develop team skills.
using “Learning Design Studios,” such as DaVinci—space designed for multiple purposes (including outdoors)

When you change the role of the teacher, you change the role of the school. The school becomes a hub in a larger environment.

For more information:

Designing for the future
Great Schools by Design
School works

Due to time constraints and la ck of skill, I am not able to accurately recreate the drawings/diagrams on the slide presentation. The slides of this presentation by Tom Carroll can be seen on

Tuesday Luncheon by Marcia

Anita Givens--Sr. Director of Instructional Materials and Educational Technology, Texas Education Agency

New ideas need to get “sticky”

Two HS students from Plano West speak on their experiences with online courses.

Mary Rich
Eric Ng
Mary—senior--took economics class online—her comments:
Student must be motivated in order to succeed in completing an online course
Enjoyed class—was “easy” for her
Friends told her to take an online class, said it was “easy”
Little communication between teacher and student UNTIL she missed a deadline
Found out about online class from friends—class was NOT suggested or mentioned by counselor (this comment seemed to surprise some of the audience)

Eric—took Algebra II online
Nice teacher
Received a reminder of due dates
Received response to tests, etc., with feedback on what’s wrong and how to fix it
Experienced a “one on one” feel in online class
Says “it’s easier”
Friends took classes online to “get them out of the way”—meaning that they took required classes online, so they would have more time for special electives offered by their traditional school

What makes a good online teacher?
Prompt response to student questions (“24 hours would be nice”—Mary)
Teacher needs to “be there” for the student, and the student needs to know this
Email instructions, etc., in response to student problems

Eric—math sites and links were readily available
Mary—group discussions, liked going outside the text

One word regarding online school?
Mary—Traditional school is boring. Online was more interesting. She could find answers on her own.
Eric—online class was fun, nice.

What did they like most about online courses? Least?
Eric—(liked most)tests were easy--(least) no notes—you had to guess
Mary---(liked most) I’m on my own, liked ebook, can go at your own pace—(least) little feedback, never saw test scores, links didn’t work

If money were no object, what kind of technology would you like to add?
Better computers—like Apple
Better Internet service—too slow

How does taking onlinecourses help you for the future?
Eric—you can get stuff out of the way so you can spend more time on entrepreneurship or sports marketing
Mary—you must motivate yourself to get it done

Other comments?
Mary—students need good online teachrs because then the students feel they want to learn.

A good teacher motivates and encourages.
Instant Messaging would be a good tool for eschool.
Teacher should initiate call to student.

Traditional vs. Online
Face-to-face = lecture—and only 5% of lecture is on the test
Online is more direct.
Face to face = distractions/disturbances in class can be a problem
Online—this doesn’t exist.

How would you use blog in class?
Mary—have used MySpace—could use blog for writing. Language arts
Eric—have people comment on how to solve a given equation
Mary—could use to help each other

What do you do online?
Mary—usually multitasking (but realizes she must focu)
Eric—has several programs open while listening to music

Mary—AP course online would be difficult, but it would really depend on the teacher and student. Courses should have a MySpace type place for each class—students can help each other, get to know each other.

Eric—would rather be at home than at school, because I can listen to music while I’m working at home
Mary—being in school makes me sleepy, the teacher doesn’t teach, it’s better at home where there are no distractions—well, the ones that are there are yours and you know how to deal with them.

Tuesday Session 4 by Marcia

Session: 21st Century Teaching and Learning Skills: How Can They Teach What They Don’t Know?
Essential Elements for Professional Development for Online Teachers
Susan Leavey, Virtual High School

This is basically an overview of Virtual High School (VHS) program.

What good is professional development for teachers?
Keeps teachers current
Collaboration opportunities
Gets teachers out of the classroom for more collegial options
Supportive environment

21st Century learners are
Critical thinkers
Problem solvers

“Virtual High School does Professional Development very well.”
VHS PD is 10 weeks beginning in September.

PROfessional GRowth ESSentials

VHS program—how it works
School provides VHS with teacher, school can enroll 25 students free.

Teacher can design own course or use preexisting
Community, technology and pedagogy in all courses

Group activities and group projects are stressed.
Parents are NOT involved with teachers.
Large support network for teachers

PROfessional GRowth ESSentials
Course design
content, goal setting
portfolio and evidence
additional evidence, reflection, portfolio

Students take ownership of academic capability

Tuesday Session 3 by Marcia

Supplementing Curriculum with Online Options
Sue Steiner, Program Director
Heidi Smith, Local Mentor/Teacher
Kiel eSchool

Info on Kiel eSchool

Kiel eSchool provides online options for students grades 7-12 on a fulltime or part-time basis, and half or full credit courses are available to meet graduation requirements.
Students apply through the guidance department
Content is mainly through Florida Virtual, but they use other vendors too, as well as some courses which were created by Kiel instructors.

Characteristics of Quality Online Courses
Good teachers
engaging content
present a highly interactive environment
aligned to standards
self paced
use of graphics and multimedia
tracking and remediation
allows resubmissions
incorporate real-life situations
builds community
timely and continuous feedback
Student/Teacher interaction
Good organization
Accommodate varied learning styles and intelligences
Learning pedagogy
Age appropriate content
Assessment and evaluation

How do you know students are doing their own work?
Authentic assessments
Oral quizzes
Proctored semester exams
Frequent communication
Threaded discussion
Highly qualified teachers

Course managements systems have many different features. Choose one that fits your needs

Another way to assess tools

OCEP—Online Course Evaluation Project identifies and evaluates existing online courses (through

NROC—(National Repository of Online Courses) a library of online courses

Value of using Supplementary Content
Provides high quality diverse content which is beyond the means of the teacher
Addresses various learning styles
Provides multi-modal learning experiences
Saves teachers time in trying to develop it themselves—why reinvent the wheel?

Course Vendors
Kiel initially looked at approximately 75 different vendors
Received RFPs from 27
Piloted six of them the first year
Chose Florida Virtual School as primary content vendor
Also use several locally developed courses

Supplementary Vendors
United Streaming (licensed through FLVS)
BrainPOP (teacher access Package $150)
SAS inschool (50 users $250)
Get a Clue--for English classes (25 users $395)
Horizon Wimbda—voice boards used in Spanish course ($23 per license)
Geometer’s Sketchpad—now built into locally developed online geometry course

Web Conferencing (Online Meeting Space)
VOIP (Voice-over IP) consideration: does web conferencing use VOIP or do you neet the Internet and a separate phone?
Horizon Wimbda
Skype (software that allows you to make free calls to anyone else on Skype, anywhere in the world)

Learning Objects—mini lessons
Learning objects are based on the premise that they must provide learner with succinct relevant information, guidance in relation to key points and an opportunity to interact with the content
They can be completed in 5-10 minutes—delivery can be online, on CD-ROM, or adapted to a print based form.
Example: Merlot

Fox Valley Technical College
WiscNet Digital Districts Online

Wikis and Blogs
Wiki is software that allows users to freely create and edit Web page content using any Web browser—a collection of works by many authors
Blog—a frequent, chronological publication of personal thoughts and Web links

Virtual Field Trips and Projects
A bibliography can be found at

Advantages and Disadvantages
Price is high for high-quality content
CD/DVD supplement to textbooks
Media rich content varies significantly
Ability to customize
Additional Services
Courses vs. modules
Upfront vs. ongoing costs
Cost per student, or one cost for course
Technology issues

Philosophy and vision—Does the content and technology fit the design of your school/program?
Will the content fit on your course management system?
Does the content meet state standards?
Will your infrastructure support this?
Firewall issues
Java plug-ins
Software applications

· Who will host the course?
· Security issues
· Intellectual property rights
· Copyright issues
· ADA compliance
· Licensing agreements
o CMS and content
o per student, per class, per year

Teacher Training
· Orient to course management system
· Instructional design training
· Ongoing mentor (this is important!)
· Ongoing staff development
· Technical support/help desk

Learning Points Associates/NCREL
has online teacher facilitation course—6 week course with credit through Cardinal Stritch
has course for school administrators MOL I (3 weeks) and MOL II (3 weeks)

Student Considerations
Is orientation provided? (this is considered very important to student success)
Is there a teacher at the other end of the course? (essential!)
Quality directions
Technical support/help desk

Does it fit in your existing course?
If it’s an entire course, how does it fit into your curriculum?
Will this contribute to student learning? (enrichment or remediation)
Use of video and audio
keeps students more engaged
bandwidth issues
Drill and practice
Authentic assessments

Start with just a few sources
Look for a resource that supports a large number of quality media-rich resources
Decide whether to buy, license, or build your own
Consider partnerships or consortia—better purchasing power

Tuesday Session 2 by Marcia

Tuesday, November 7
Tim Magner—Director, Office of Educational Technology, U.S. Dept. of Education

Federal initiatives and the importance of promoting student success in math and science areas.

Competitiveness Trends
The world is changing.
India and China—two fastest growing economies (China-manufacturing, India-services)
Many foreign students who graduate from universities in America go back to their home countries, giving those countries a competitive edge. Many of those foreign students go on to Masters and Doctorate degrees in math, science, engineering.Our need for engineers exceeds the number we graduate
Currently 47% of engineering graduates are Asian
Our ability to compete in the future is dependent on education—60% of new jobs require post secondary education
Problem: rate of change: Even if we could graduate every American student, that is only a small fraction of graduates possible in China/India/Russia- (due to vast populations)
So…we must educate our students VERY WELL—they will be competing 10:1
Math/science education must be improved. “Quality will determine competitiveness!”This training is crucial for the future.

IT (instructional technology) is driving force in US economy
President’s American Competitiveness Program-- train and keep our students here with high quality skills for 21st Century

National Math and Math Now—expand AP Incentive programs.Just taking an AP course helps students even if they don’t take exam.
Changes happening:Location independent for education (online courses)Multi-mediaInformation distribution is flattened---free and level acrossMany kinds of information delivery systems, with many ways to access and participateNew models of instructional design—in process Textbooks online or download
DATA INFO needs to include context, relevance, authority, suitability Need to personalize, add meaningOnline learning can do this.“Online can be both an opportunity within and without the public schools-can be a part of traditional process-requires creativity”

He flashed through some in-depth slides rather quickly—since I could not write down all of that information, the slide show may be viewed at or email These addresses at the end of my notes on this presentation.

Questions from audience:
Q: Shouldn’t state governments be interested in data regarding online courses?
A: Yes, they should be interested and collecting data.
Q: Learning objects should be the role of the Federal government, if national unity in education is desired.
A: The challenge for the federal government is not only promote technology, but how to procedurally implement technology.

What is the future of virtual schools? We need to broaden the concept of what school is. The challenge is to provide clear structure to help students choose/select appropriate online courses.

Flashed through some in-depth slides rather quickly—since I could not write down all of that information, the slide show may be viewed at or email


Tuesday Session 1 by Marcia

SESSION: Redesigning Education through Powerful Partnerships and Facilitation
Presenters:Lisa McClure iQ Academies at Wisconsin-KC Distance Learning
Kristine Diener iQ Academies at Wisconsin-SD of Waukesha (principal)
Ross White LEARN NC
iQ Academies is a charter high school in its third year—currently has 9500semester enrollments—SDW hold charter
Mission: provide student focused achievement oriented curriculum in iQ Academies
They struggled with the matter of “time” (to meet goals, etc.) and chose a partner.
Difference between donor and partner?
Example of bacon and eggs breakfast: the chicken was a donor, but the pig was totally committed!

Why partner?
partnerships establish common goals
pool resources
jointly plan and implement

Searched for a business to partner with, and found KC Distance Learning

How responsibilities are divided in the partnership:
School District of Waukesha (SDW) provides:

KC Distance Learning provides:
Computer, printer, internet access
Online curriculum and text
Student services & tech support
Marketing and recruiting

Administrative support

Data solutions, website, PR

iQ Academies
Teaching staff
Student counselor
Academic progress records
Program manager
Student services manager
Outreach coordinator (build school community)
Clerical staff
Pace charts etc.

iQ students are 50% homeschool, 30% health/emotional issue, 10% disenfranchised, 10% “career kids”
750 fulltime students, 700 open enrolled students
WI charter contract is a five year document

A determining factor (in choosing KC) for Waukesha was in their core values:
1. create comprehensive high school progress that mirrors the quality program already offered at their three traditional high schools
2. offer high-quality standards-based content and state-of-the-art delivery
3. provide instruction via the internet by highly qualified Waukesha teachers

Virtual Education is NOT a cash cow!
LEARN NC basically supports what is already being taught, and uses a facilitator at the site. The facilitator is “the adult in the room.” Students take courses onsite with facilitator, who is responsible for taking attendance, talking tostudents, keeping students on track, emailing instructors, grading student work, proctoring tests, and technical troubleshooting.

Tues Breakout1 Online Perceiver by Janel

Online Program Perceiver Instrument- Appleton E School
Consists of 8 components

1. Discover Phase- complete a rubric to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the program. Self evaluation.
2. adminstrate surveys
3. Analyze results and identify weakness ansd needs and create goals.
4. Best Practices Phase

Examples of best practices for key elements to place online.

Lots of surveys. Identified exemplary aspects of many nationwide online programs that will be available on their website. OPPI- currently not posted

Eight Components
1-program information
2-program orientation
3-program technology
4-program curriculum
5-progrm teaching
6-Program characteristics for student success
7-program support
8-program data collection

OPPI Rubric and surveys

Tuesday Morning Session by Deb

Tim Magner: Tech Dept US Gov
The world is changing
Fastest growing economies (China-manufacturing, India-services)
So many who graduate here go back to their home country giving them competitive edge
Gap in need for engineers and number we graduate
Education is key driver in our ability to compete
Rate of change problem: Even if we could graduate everyone available, that is only a small fraction of ones available in China/India/Russia-we have to educate our percent very well in order to compete with vast numbers from other countries
NEED to improve math/science!! Quality will determine competitiveness!!!
Talent-business support-technology needed for growth
President’s American Competitiveness Program to train and keep our students here and qualified in skills for 21st Century
Math/science preparedness is crucial
Just taking AP course even if they don’t take exam helps them in Post Sec/
Changes happening:
Location independent for education
Info distribution is flattened-free and level across
All kinds of info delivery systems and ways to access and participate
New models of instructional design-developing and using
Textbooks can be out and download is in
Need context and relevance, authority, suitability added to data/info
Need to mesh above process and distribution with value in personalizing it
Have to cohese all this with meaning and new modalities
Online learning can do the cohesion
Don’t agree that educating all students is the way to meet the sheer numbers competing in other countries!! Those countries don’t educate all students-they really focus on top end!
Online can be both an opportunity within and without the public schools-can be a part of traditional process-requires creativity
Learning objects needs to be a role of federal govt-challenge for govt is not only promote technology but to how to implement technology procedurally-another challenge is the absence of national standards/curriculum
Need to develop a clear process for how students/parents select any online program-traditional to full-time online continuum

Chic Thompson
Visualize where we want the “ball” to go!! Swing through the ball with the right side of the brain!
How to put hippy skippy into life:
Getting rid of “yes, but” left brain thinking!
What are the “killer phrases” (yes, but phrases)
Nerf ball thrown at those who use “killer phrases” which come AFTER the brain storming
It’s how we relate to the idea in the first minute that dictate a great deal of success
How to defuse the killer phrases
Can’t just give out ideas-have to be ready to defuse (Yes, and… .) the killer phrases!
Positive response to a negative
Create a vision driven solution-see handout
HOW will we achieve it –BE BOLD!
Jim Gilmore-the whole world is a stage-we get to choose the kind of experience we create!
The biggest issue in this session was to change from “Yes, but” to “Yes, and”. The power of ideas!!
Do an “idea share” around a particular concept!

Break Out 4: Evaluating Online Teaching by Deb

Profile of an effective Online Teacher
Unconditional commitment to student success-go the distance
Training Teachers to teach Online
Whole different kind of teaching
Taking an Online Course
Teacher isn’t dispersing the content as in face-face
Do this before becoming a teacher online
Course Management System-what platform being used (includes chatroom, whiteboard, gradebook, exam/survey builder, email etc)
Training on the CMS
Bring in national trainers/college and repeat when new teachers are on board-ongoing
Online Teacher training course-6 week course-Cardinal Stritch 3 credit course-write this into grant application
Management of Online Learning Courses-2 3 week mols- contact Kiel school
Training on Specific Course
FLVS offers a course and mentor-engaging students is often the difficulty
Conferencing Tools
Need to train teachers on this for web conferencing
Web-based Supplementary Materials (subscriptions or licensing needed)
Like United Streaming, BrainPOP
Additional Training through FLVS

Ongoing monthly online teacher training sessions with 2 F2F meetings a year with pairing to mentor and one day tech training inservice

Several courses from Cardinal Stritch
Partner with Appleton-e school-are separate entities but shared efforts as in PD, mentor PPT and putting together an online teacher training minicourse (don’t share fiscal management)
Have to deal with intellectual property issues (who owns the course that is developed?)
Handout: Online evaluation sheet for online teacher (both self and supervisor evals)
Students have “pace charts” to help them stay on task
Transforms F2F learning-some teachers find they are better teachers in classroom as a result of hybrid experiences
Kiel school teachers
Everyone is like a first year teacher with ongoing training needed
All teachers have chosen to teach online
Give bonuses instead of raises
Online Teacher Evaluation mirrors job description and is given by supervisor-need to look at our contract language
Improving teachers is the goal
Virtual observation
Ways of engaging students, helping have success, positive feedback, quick response time, timely assessments
Are things current and what about parent/guidance correspondence
Make sure supervisor can access teacher/student archives
Teachers are to keep phone log, student participation encouraged, current syllabus and pace chart, progress report and participation in staff meetings/trainings, timely grading
Importance of Feedback
Can have a major impact-best tool for helping students learn
Encourage student reflection and help students understand how they can improve
Teachers is required to contact students, parent, counselor-after 15 days, student is no longer a student
Make allowances for sickness or illness treatment
Elements of Effective Feedback
Professional, positive, specific, personal and encouraging
Delivery –written, verbal face to face
F2F required with student and parent-exceptions are possible but rare
Lots less problems
Require all students to take online technology course
Adm needs to back teachers up
Effective Communication
Welcome phone call-follow-up if problems
Web conference
Weekly/monthly progress reports
Excellent resources

Tuesday Morning General Session by Janel

US Dept of Education- Impact of Virtual Schools and Online Learning (Tim Manger)
India and China- huge changes in economies and education
Foreign students- coming here for advanced degrees and then returning to their home countries
60% of new jobs will require post secondary education held by 1/3 of workers
Inside the Beltway, Rising Above the Gathering Storm, 21st Century Innovation- good books

The future is not found but made...

Chic Thompson Networking Activity
Eliminate the yes-buts during brainstorming
Identify the top five killer phrases that stifle online initiatives and defuse them with yes-and statements (can we do a test first, what will make this work, etc)

1. What do you want to acieve?- be specific
2. Why do you want to achieve it?- be passionate
3. How am I going to achieve it?- be bold
Figure out how to diffuse the killer phrases

The Experience Economy- Jim Gilmore

1. Each Quarter Ask- What are the Ten Dumbest Things we do in...
2. What would we never do? (activities of opposites) What would we never do to help online students in online learning- what would we do to flip that
3. Borrow an idea... ie what can online educaiton learn about themselves from .... (reality TV shows)

26-63=1 (Switch one digit to make it correct) Power of creative thinking.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Lunch Keynote What A Great Idea by Janel

Charles Chip Thompson

Began working at Gortex- cultre of "yes and". Its trial and ERROR not trial and rightness.
Worked at Epcot where it was a culture of "yes but"

If you want to be innovative you need to be yes-and first and yes-but later (start curious then move to critical)

Key to solving a problem is asking why 5 times. Why is this a problem get a response, why is that a problem,response, why,response, etc. BECAUSE I SAID SO does not count as a response

Einstein- difficult problems cannot be solved with the same mode of thinking that created them.

Einstein- I have no special gift. I am just passionately curious.

Turn negatives into opportunities. How can the problem be fixed?

Ask- what would we never do? See where this leads when the answers are analyzed and pondered. Embrace the power of the opposite (creative destruction)

Human beings strive to achieve immortality
1. By having kids
2. By planting trees
3. By having ideas and acting on them.

Go forth and achieve immortality.

Break Out 4: How To Start a Virtual School by Janel

The Virtual Campus Rapid City, SD
Funding Issues
Teacher pay-based upon number of students in the class that pass the class and per credit, pay beased upon FTE or adjunct?
Marketing- need to advertise and figure out how to advertise what you are doing, brochures, frig magnets, pens, etc
Courses- create or purchase, must consider revision options
South Dakota islooking for teachers with SD licenses
Cultivating Successful students, asynchronous, exit surveys

Minnesota Virtual Academy Houston, MN
Very small school with limited resources including personell and their experiences. K12 is their curriculum provider that makes it work really really well. Highly recommend them.
SIS- Automated CumulativeFile
Extracurricular activities- destination imagination, knowledge bowl, spelling bees, etc

Kansas Virtual School
tapped into parent resources for regional locations where families get together
community enrichment package
coach and support parents
mothers group meets for dinner
building community to support parents and students
activities occuring across the state on a weekly basis
parents plan these activites

Need an SIS that will work with the LMS to keep track of communication pieces

Breakout Session 3: Policy Making and Online Schools by Janel

Key Issues for Policy Making
Student assessment
Full time vs supplemental
Program accountability
Program models

They talked a lot about state level policy making so a lot of it does not apply, but the implications and areas that they are examiing will be very important in the development of our school.

Bell South and SREB hae a variety of resources for us to use

Be careful with much of the curiculum purchased outside of the states because they are centered around national rather than state standards, but if you want to sell your developed curriculum it is best to center it around national standards or at least be able to map them that way. However, the purchased curriculum should be reviewed against your specific state's standards.

Breakout #2: Virtual Schools and the School Library by Janel

Terence and Kathy Cavanaugh

Primary Purposes- SUPPORTING the CURRICULUM and promoting reading enjoyment.
Library is the most collaborative spot in the school- need to keep this up
Concerns that the library is being forgotten in terms of cost effectiveness
80% of books are purchased by 20% of the people: this is also true of teachers
20% of books are bought by 30% of the people, the other 50% don't buy books

Reading for enjoyment helps you move up in student achievement, skills improve every year

Student-Millennial Generation
Majority go to google but they realize that time is wasted

Currently there are not many requirements for libraries and online schools
A lot of hybrid libraries are popping up
Subscriptions to online library associations (materials and librarian services, but most of these are not tied to gether) There are some gaps here

Good Links
OverDrive- Digital Library Reserve
Accessible Book

This presentation is more professors trying to describe thier research project than giving information. That is slightly disappointing. They only have about 8 responses so far. They do have a research presentation available on the webpage. Link below.

Presentation is available online Click here.

Break Out 1: Hybrid Models of Online Learning by Deb

Piloted to start-are a state virtual school for state of Georgia
Offering for both AP and regular classes
Offer to public/private/homeschool and open for state funding
What we found:
Many schools have needs in addition to what we had imagined
These schools want to serve their student but not in the “traditional” on line
All adjunct teachers
Students go to their own school but take the course online during that scheduled time
Latin is biggest course
Can provide for a class w/o a teacher
Students can float in whatever period they can go to the lab-the teacher in the lab class that period gives oversight and/or help
Student’s school provides supervision-every school has a facilitator in charge
School loses the FTE-follows the student so the VS gets the FTE for the online students
Have developed most of their own curriculum
Lot of teachers use Synchonized tools
None are selfpaced and have Friday due dates-most courses are specific lengths
Willing to collaborate
How to support a new online teacher? GA can use their curriculum and facilitate lessons on which teacher is not comfortable with yet
Blended learning is growing
Schools who get involved have to pay a seat fee and for online textbooks
Blended is mix of face and online (ex online during week for AP Bio and face labs on Fridays)
Have thought of putting all their content on the web (moodle)
Lots of schools just want to do better in AP-putting 8 AP reviews on line free to every student
Want to give student opportunity for a class they can’t take in any other way-more cost effective and really not in direct competition with schools or CESA’s, etc
Helping kids in some way meet college entrance requirements
Lets homebound students taken as many as they need free
Professional Development course offered-10 hour course (platform, policy, processes, etc) Has complete Q&A listed
If student is as FTE, it is during day, but if tuition, can do it anytime
Online all the time-flexible hours and all virtual
Obstacle: Missing computers at home-have expectations still to do all the coursework
Offer courses to all in a residential setting-set up a schedule for doing core
Offering course work to alternative schools
Medical homebound-this is a great resource –helps the student stay on task and doesn’t burden the of getting all the make-up stuff to that student
Special Ed homebound kids-schools do well financially as the virtual school is cheaper than what the school gets from state
Some schools allow students to come in on their schedule-student can do work anytime as long as meet due dates
Helps with extracurriculars as kids really involved can take classes anytime and can leave school early or come in late
Official class size is 20
Most teachers teach a regular 6 classes and then one class on line-some at home teachers
Paid by the student-AP-$250 per student enrolled
Low drop rate-if they drop after first 5 days, teacher gets to keep the money
******Have courses on math remediation UNITS! Check on that!! Will try this in the spring-Alg 1 and 2. District will just pay the cost of that course
Pay the teachers to develop an online class
Working with SRB for course quality
Have a demo class online to show parents on website
Registration format is their own design