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Jul-06-2009 16:22printcomments

The Future of Education is Online

Who Says? Author Lisa Gillis - and the 1 Million U.S. Students Attending Virtual Schools Gillis Available to Media for Insights and Advice on Today's Hottest Education Trend

Online school

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Every parent wants the best education for their child. And for today's plugged-in students, the best education may be online. Author Lisa Gillis provides insights and practical advice for parents in a new book, "Virtual Schooling: A Guide to Optimizing Your Child's Education," (Palgrave Macmillan, $15.95). More than 1 million U.S. elementary and secondary students now take all or part of their class load online, according to The Sloan Consortium. That's a twentyfold increase since 2000, when only 50,000 students ventured online for their education. Forty-four U.S. states now offer online education to elementary or secondary students, and experts predict that within 10 years, half of all classes will be online. Now director of government affairs and school development for Insight Schools, Inc., the nation's leading network of tuition-free, diploma-granting, online public high schools, Gillis drew on her 25 years as teacher, school administrator and parent to create the first-ever practical guide for parents searching for the education that best suits their child's individual needs. Teaming with co-authors Elizabeth Kanna and Christina Culver, Gillis tells parents: -- How virtual schooling can meet the individual needs of children

-- How much time parents should expect to spend guiding their online students

-- How children get caught in traditional schools' "teaching to the middle"

-- The difference between homeschooling and virtual education with parental guidance

-- How virtual schooling suits multiple intelligences and learning styles

-- Why online education is a fit for today's young "digital natives" -- How to find more than 250 specific resources for more information on virtual schooling

"This is a road map for parents to discover the world of online education," Gillis said. "Will it be supplemental or full-time? Private or public? Maybe your child simply needs online tutoring support. We break it out for you, answer your top 40 FAQs and lead you through the entire process."

Gillis is available for print, radio and network/cable TV interviews. A thoughtful and lively speaker, Gillis has her own dramatic story to tell about online education. Gillis is the mother of identical twin sons, one of whom was born with significant vision challenges. While brother Stephen excelled in school, John had difficulty learning to read due to his disability.

After exhausting all her options with traditional school programs, Gillis decided to work with John using an individualized learning program.

"I had an awakening," she said. "I realized that if I, as an educator, couldn't find support for my child, how could other parents? I want parents to understand that learning is not about them, it's not about the school. It's about the individual needs of the child."

Source: Insight Schools, Inc.

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Glen July 6, 2009 8:15 pm (Pacific time)

Don't mistake content for education.

Dave July 6, 2009 6:15 pm (Pacific time)

So how do you teach a child to read what is on the screen? With picturesw and letters? How would a child that can't read submit questions to on-line tutors? How do young children learn to interface with other children? How will unions control the teaching enviornment?

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