The APS mill levy approved in 2012 provided funds for instructional improvements at every school. APS Online used funds to pilot a part-time online learning concept. The pilot included 45 students at high schools throughout the district. Students enrolled in online courses in world languages (Chinese and French), psychology, journalism and biology.
Because of the success of the pilot, APS Online plans to expand the program in 2013-14 with an E-rate Learning On-the-Go grant from the Federal Communications Commission. The program will offer part-time and supplemental online choices (sixth or seventh classes) to additional high school students. Future plans call for providing online options to advanced students at K-8 and middle schools and in gifted and talented programs.
“We are seeing an increased use of online learning and training technology by colleges, employers and in the military. Quality online instruction will prepare our students to be college, career or military ready,” said Wendy Doran, principal of the APS Online High School.
In addition to preparing students for a technology rich society, expanding the online program will provide students an increased number of course options and allow them to take additional classes and stay on track for high school graduation. APS Online is also exploring concurrent enrollment for college credit.