New plan for Britain’s first state-funded ‘virtual school’

The Telegraph is reporting the latest developments over plans for Britain’s first state-funded “virtual school”, saying it could open next year with the aim of offering hundreds of children disruption-free lessons without leaving their own home…

Proposals submitted to the Department for Education would see children as young as nine log in to a web-based classroom at 9.15am before receiving up to four hours of direct tuition each day.

The school – created by the Wey Education Schools Trust – will provide lessons for children aged up to 19, with around 100 pupils in each year group.

Its backers recently made a second submission to the DfE for state funding and could open the school as early as September 2015, claiming it would have none of the behaviour problems of normal state schools.

The proposal forms part of the Coalition’s “free schools” programme – wholly new institutions run by parents groups, charities and churches independent of local council control.

If approved, the new “Wey Ecademy” would be the first state-funded online school…

It would principally cater for families that already choose to home-educate their children although the trust insisted it would also provide greater choice for other parents unhappy with the standard of education being provided at local schools.

Critics warned that distance learning was a poor substitute for actual “face-to-face interaction”…

More at: New plan for Britain’s first state-funded ‘virtual school’

 

See more in the TES at: How ‘ecademy’ may make virtual state education a reality

 

It will be fascinating to see how this works out in practice if it gets the go ahead – do you find it an exciting or worrying development? How would children grow up differently if something like this became the norm for schooling? Please share in the comments or via Twitter…

 

Don’t forget you can sign up to receive our daily email bulletin every morning (around 7 am) with all the latest schools news stories. Your details will never be given to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any stage. Just follow this link!

Free school founded three years ago is beating England’s best
Free school breakfasts 'must change', say Welsh Conservatives
Categories: Free Schools, Teaching and Technology.

Comments

  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove I think this is the way education will go but it relies heavily on a reliable, national broadband network

  2. Janet2

    Wey Education Schools Trust – set up as a ‘vehicle’ so shareholders in parent firm Zail can see a return.  Should be much easier if all you’re providing are ‘teachers’ via a video link.

    http://www.localschoolsnetwork.org.uk/2013/08/how-many-academy-trusts-are-a-vehicle-for-investors-wishing-to-profit-from-running-englands-schools/ (scroll down).

    ‘None of the behaviour problems’.  None of the face-to-face interaction with other children, either.

Let us know what you think...