Thousands of Florida students may ditch public elementary and middle schools next year in favor of online classes at home — an option that could change the face of public education.

As teachers struggle to implement scope-n-sequence, mandated curriculum, prepare children for irrelevant–except to the “education business”–high stakes test, some in America are choosing to “opt out.” Admittedly, who wouldn’t want to opt out of the high stakes testing culture imposed from above by legislators supporting a crippling, slippery slope to bankruptcy for schools like No Child Left Behind? And, in some states, the pressure to learn online grows, to slip loose the bounds of Education’s clay feet.

A new law that takes effect next fall requires every district in the state to set up an online school for kindergarten through eighth-grade students. They won’t have to get on the bus — or even get out of their PJs — to head to school at the family computer.

A handful of elementary- and middle-school students already are experimenting with virtual classes, withdrawing from regular schools and enrolling instead for online instruction. Students take a full range of courses, including reading, writing, math, science, history, art, music and even physical education.

“I am so excited about this that my goal is to go all the way through 12th grade,” said Joni Fussell, whose 8-year-old daughter has been studying at the kitchen computer in their Altamonte Springs home since January.
Source: Virtual Schools in Florida, Orlando Sentinel

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