Virtual school, are also known as cyber school or e-school. These online schools provide lessons to students through the internet. Virtual schools consider different kinds of technologies to deliver education across the globe. Virtual schools provide a wide opportunity to the students sitting anywhere across the globe to take part.
Homeschool students can get substantive interaction and regular support from online teachers. Virtual school is available in almost every part of the globe. Such kinds of online classes apply to all standards of education. This education motivates the student by giving transferable credit. They undertake recognized online examination and based on the result, and the students are promoted to the advanced levels.
Virtual schools gain their popularity, especially at the college or high school levels. The participatory students are mostly aged around 30 years. This age segments mostly prefer this online educational program. According to the survey, the majority (41%) of the virtual school students are thirty years old or more, while 35.5% of students are 24 to 29 years old, and 24.5% of students of 16 to 23 years old.
The virtual educational concept is gaining its popularity across the globe, along with time. According to the survey report, 4700 well-reputed institutions are offering virtual learning. Six million students or more than that took part in online education in 2015. This number was 3.9 percent higher than in 2014. It is found that 29.7 percent of students pursuing higher education join at least one virtual course. Students prefer virtual learning over campus-based learning. The campus-based courses are losing students, and the number of students is increasing in virtual schools.
These programs might vary for different virtual institutions depending on the study materials and interactive classes. The class sizes vary from a small cluster to a hundred students. The teaching styles and educational activities might also vary in different virtual schools.
The virtual learning is sometimes asynchronous. The students can follow their own pace and independent styles to complete the projects. The teachers give the students different individual or group projects, and the students need to complete and submit them on the due date. The students can perform these activities according to their convenience without following any given schedule. The interaction usually takes place through wikis, discussion boards, and blogs.
Whereas, the synchronized virtual classes take place on a real-time basis. The students and teachers need to join the online class at a scheduled time. These classes are follow-through text, audio, or video chats. These sessions are well-constructed so that after delivering the lectures on a specific topic, there should be time to clear the students’ doubts.
The virtual classes often provide a hybrid or blended way of learning. Here the students get the opportunity to interact with the faculties both virtually and face-to-face. Students generally interact face-to-face with teachers during the semesters.
What is the meaning of a virtual school?
Virtual schools or e-schools are the platforms that provide online education and educational activities to the students sitting in different parts of the world. This online educational program undertakes online examinations. Depending on the result, the virtual school promotes the students to advanced levels of educations.
In the middle of the 1990s, the virtual schools’ concept took birth in the UK, North America, and New Zealand, and Australia. This concept gained popularity along with the increase in computer users. Its independent and flexible structure drew the attraction of public school students. Moreover, they don’t need to go to any campus to attend classes. They can sit anywhere and join the class with the help of computers and internet connection. This concept makes the virtual schools popular over the brick and mortar school.
The iNACOL (International Association for K-12 Online Learning) set a standard for virtual schools in 2007. They updated the standard further in 2008. The main aim was to monitor the virtual or online learning process, and this also ensures that all the online learning providers are accredited. All educators are certified teachers.
Fees and location
The online educational programs follow the state provisions and fees of the standard of other state schools. Now a day, a large number of US school districts are offering virtual classes. Thus the student can earn their graduation from reputed institutions without leaving their homes or living accommodations. Most of the virtual schools give the students laptops, internet service, and study material to complete their homework according to the course standards.
As the students get the laptop and internet facilities, they almost do not need any textbooks or copies to complete and submit the given projects. The students get such electronic assistance with no cost or with a little charge. Learning opportunities are endless in virtual school.
Is a virtual school right for my child?
For most of the families, virtual school is a better choice for the kids. Both the parents and kids get several benefits from the virtual school concept.
- The kids get individual attention from the online faculties and complete the homework with their comfort and pace.
- As virtual school associates more flexibility, the kids get time to join other school activities.
- The virtual school offers personalized learning guides and plans to the kids. That helps to meet their educational goals easily.
- The parents can take part in the kid’s lessons and complete the projects. Thus they can monitor the kid’s performance regularly.
- The parents might have greater control and access to the student’s learning schedules and environment.
- The parents can maintain the kid’s education and family responsibilities simultaneously.
Things to remember while searching a virtual school
You should ensure your student takes lessons from a virtual school, and after one year of virtual learning, his regular school accepts transfers-due to travel, wounds, or trauma related to your school. See your school system for a public alternative before paying for your tuition at a nearly privately run institution.
Often keep in mind that certain virtual schools allow students to take online classes in a schoolhouse.
If so, make sure it’s better than just going to school. Finally, take a look at your student. Virtual schools are not suited to every student.
There will be a degree of self-discipline. Instead of logging into classes, students who love to hit a shopping mall can slip behind quickly that it’s hard to catch up.
Florida virtual school is a well renowned school. This institution provides online learning to kindergarten as well as higher classes student also. They offers 190 award winning online courses.
Advantages of virtual school
- There is no travel cost associated with virtual schools. The students can avoid the daily tiredness of traveling. They can also avoid weather constraints. As they don’t need to travel to any campus, they can join the classes with minor illnesses or injuries. They can focus more on the study with fewer distractions.
- Students with specific physical disabilities restrict them from going to traditional brick and mortar schools. But they can easily join the virtual schools and become highly educated.
- The virtual schools are extremely beneficial for the family persons or individual who needs flexibility. The synchronized virtual classes have a specific schedule due to the different time zones. The organization widely divides the classes across Asia, Europe, and North America based on the time zones.
- The internet facility does not restrict the knowledge limited to the pages of textbooks. The students can search for huge results related to the topic in no time.
- The students can explore the world’s different cultures as the faculties and students joined different parts of the globe.
- Virtual learning provides asynchronous learning. Here the student can perform the activity according to the convenience. The students can explore more in virtual schools than the traditional ones.
- The online learning process helps to sharp the interaction or communication skills of campus-based students. They are more exposed to real-world experiences and cultures than traditional school students.
- These are essentially beneficial for students of rural areas.
Disadvantages – The Reality of Virtual Schools
- The students of the traditional schools often involve in the social activities arranged by the schools only. These activities help to build a strong social communication capacity of the students. The students of the virtual schools do not get such exposures.
- The students are spending most of the time at home to attend the online sessions and perform the teachers’ projects. Thus they feel more comfortable at home than outside. But the actual world is located at the outside of the home.
- The starting-cost is sometimes higher than the traditional schools.
- People of the rural sectors can’t avail of these online courses widely as they have limited digital and technological access.
- Sometimes the recruiters become skeptical about offering part-time or full-time jobs to the online degree holders.
Though there are certain limitations of the virtual schools, they have more numbers of benefits too. The students can focus on the study without any external hassles such as traveling, bad weather, illness, and injuries. This concept of online public schools makes the education system more advanced by the integration of digital technologies. The blend of educational degree and fluency in technologies make a student well-competent for the future job world.
Do your analysis. Be a chosen customer and look for a school that offers your child what he needs and questions – just like a traditional school – before deciding. For instance, for several services, you will register for summer classes.