ENOLA, Pa., May 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The number of high school students in Pennsylvania's Capital area region taking online courses has multiplied by nearly ten times in the past year.
The Capital Area Online Learning Association (CAOLA), which provides online learning options to students in 19 school districts included in the Capital Area Intermediate Unit (CAIU), has seen the number of students taking online courses jump from 149 to 1,242. The number of students taking all of their courses online also increased from 1 in 2010, to 87 this year.
The reason for the dramatic increase is clear according to Holly Brzycki, supervisor of online learning at CAIU, which established CAOLA to provide flexible online learning options to its member districts. "Providing quality online courses helps our districts better serve their students more efficiently and effectively," explained Brzycki. "This innovative approach to education is cost-effective, and allows them to offer a broader range of courses without the need to increase costs and resources."
Kevin Roberts, director of curriculum and CAOLA site coordinator for the Big Spring School District, observed, "The CAOLA program has helped our students access courses they typically would not be able to take, whether due to limited offerings or scheduling conflicts. This year one of our students was able to take a Chinese I course, something they never would be able to do in the past."
Bermudian Springs School District Superintendent Paul Healey noted, "This program offers an excellent quality education and is more economical for the district. All students are going to need 21st century skills, and it is our responsibility to provide them."
CAIU partners with EdisonLearning, a leading international educational solutions provider, to expand its high school offerings through EdisonLearning's eCourses. CAOLA also offers its full-time online high school program through EdisonLearning's eAcademy.
EdisonLearning has developed 90 highly engaging online classes ranging from core subjects such as: Literature, Mathematics, Biology and Chemistry; to a broad range of electives including; Chinese, Macroeconomics, and Chemical and Mechanical Engineering. Ongoing development and review of all online courses is conducted in partnership with faculty at Stanford University's School of Education.
Brzycki praised the EdisonLearning team for its efforts in partnering with CAIU to offer its eCourses and eAcademy. "EdisonLearning has gone above and beyond. The team has been there, helping us grow. They are just as invested in our success as we are," she said.
Jeff Wahl, President and CEO of EdisonLearning, said, "We are honored to be working with CAIU to offer high school students in Pennsylvania the choice of an engaging, adaptable and quality online learning experience."
CAOLA is continuing discussions to bring more school districts into the program, expecting the strong level of growth to continue, Brzycki added.
About the Capital Area Intermediate Unit
CAIU is one of 29 regional educational service agencies in Pennsylvania serving school districts in Cumberland, Dauphin, Perry and Northern York Counties. CAIU's Capital Area Online Learning Association leads its initiative for viable, cost-effective and quality online learning solution for students. For more information and a list of online course offerings, visit http://caola.caiu.org.
EdisonLearning is a leading international educational solutions provider. Our education reform heritage gives us unique perspective and experience in providing our partners effective solutions to improve student achievement. EdisonLearning has educated more than one million students, and currently serves partners with more than 450,000 students in 25 states, the United Kingdom and the Middle East through 391 school partnerships. For more information: www.edisonlearning.com.
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