Student - Studying by m00by CC attribution, no derivative works.
There have been a lot of changes to distributed learning in the past 5 years which have resulted in more students, especially in grades 10 and up, enrolling in DL schools. There are a myriad of reasons that students have for choosing a DL school. Lately at my school we are seeing more and more students enrolling who have learning challenges and/or do not have the organizational skills to successfully work through the courses we offer. With many of these students they have agreed to come in and work at the school for 2 or more days of the week to receive support from their teachers and certified educational assistant (teachers assistant). This is helping the students to be more successful, but I don't think it is enough; they still need more support.
This leads me to wonder, when does a DL school stop being a DL school? I mean, if we really want these kids to be successful, maybe we should say that they need to come into the school 4 days a week? It seems that the system needs another option. The students that I am concerned about are not being successful at the regular schools, but they also don't 'fit' at the alternative programs. They are in between and so are choosing the DL option. The problem is that most successful DL students need to be organized, motivated, and have strong support at home. That is not the case for most of these kids. Heck, a DL program is challenging for the 'ideal' student.
I guess I need to step back and ask, are these kids being more successful with us than they were in their regular school? If so, is that enough? I don't know; I still think they deserve more.
What do you think? How can we help these kids who fall through the cracks?
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