Digital learning is transforming K-12 schooling in Utah – whether through fully digital courses available from the Statewide Online Education Program, district programs or charter schools, or through “blended learning” models that incorporate aspects of digital learning into a physical classroom setting.
This positive transformation will continue to occur thanks in part to recent laws passed that have created one of the best policy environments for online learning in the nation. Still, Utah can do more to expand and improve this innovative and productive environment so students can use digital learning to learn what, where, when and how is best for them.
Sutherland has released a new policy report, “8 Ways to Enhance Digital Learning in Utah Schools,” which provides eight specific recommendations for helping expand and improve digital learning opportunities for children in Utah. Here is a list of the eight recommendations:
- Adopt a digital learning requirement for high school graduation.
- Expand digital learning opportunities for middle and elementary school students.
- Establish competency – not time spent in the classroom – as the benchmark for advancement from one grade to the next.
- Require data on student learning to be considered when recertifying teachers.
- Require a professional development course in digital instruction for teachers of online or blended learning courses, and provide opportunities for training in digital instruction to all teachers.
- Clearly define in state law criteria and processes for shutting down poorly performing digital learning providers.
- Explicitly define blended learning in state law.
- Establish education savings accounts on a statewide basis.
You can read the full report here.