Document Type

Research Brief

Publication Date

5-2-2013

Abstract

This national study, which comprehensively reviews 311 virtual schools operating in the United States, finds serious and systemic problems with the nation’s full-time cyber schools. Despite virtual schools’ track record of students falling behind their peers academically or dropping-out at higher rates, states and districts continue to expand virtual schools and online offerings to students, at high cost to taxpayers. The advocates of full-time virtual schools are several years ahead of policymakers and researchers, and new opportunities are being developed and promoted largely by for-profit entities accountable to stockholders rather than to any public constituency. The report’s authors conclude that continued rapid expansion of full-time cyber schools is unwise. More research is needed; and to enable such research, state oversight agencies need to require more, and better refined, data. Financial controls and funding unique to cyber schools need to be established.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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