High school / Secondary 2, International, Minorities, equity, and access, Public education, Required - Written by on Monday, October 24, 2011 12:00 - 0 Comments

Online Learning in Canada: Will It Bring More HS Diplomas To Aboriginals

by Ai.Dan via Flickr under CreativeCommons

At WiredAcademic, we want to look at online education experiments in countries outside the US as well as the US. Here’s a story from Canada about online learning at a school district in British Columbia for students who don’t fit the normal school system.

It’s still too soon to tell whether the “Learn@Home” online program will raise the sub-par graduation rate in School District 68. SD 68 a.k.a Nanaimo-Ladysmith serves over 14,000 students living on Vancouver Island’s East Coast. It’s in the Province of British Colombia with an Aboriginal student population greater than 15% and 8% of students with special needs. SD 68′s graduation is just over 70%, which is significantly less than the provincial average of 80%. But that could be that students in the program already are not fitting in with the normal school system. In that case, a 70% graduation rate might look favorable. Learn@Home launched in 2006- there is a K-7 program and a separate 8-12 program- but will take time to gain traction.

Robert Barron at The Daily News reported:

There were more than 1,300 students in Nanaimo-Ladysmith taking at least one course online through the district’s Learn@home program last year, with almost 300 of them taking all their required courses online, and those numbers are expected to increase again in 2011-12 as they have in previous years.

The numbers at the provincial level are also expanding exponentially, jumping from about 17,000 taking school courses online in 2006 to approximately 60,000 last year, according to the latest statistics.

SD 68′s plan “Success For All” (2011-2012) has graduation rate data as a “6-year Completion Rate” and as the “First Time Grade 12″ and it’s hard to know what the story is…

Six-Year Completion Rate is calculated by using the percentage of students who graduate within six years from the time they enrol in Grade 8, adjusted for migration in and out of BC. A six-year rate provides students with an extra year beyond the five years required to move through Grades 8-12. Via British Colombia Ministry of Education

Six-Year Completion Rate:

2005-06          75%

2006-07          75%

2007-08         72%

2008-09         71%

2009-10         69%

First-Time Grade 12 Graduation Rate
A measure of students recorded as being in Grade 12 for the first time in September who then graduate in that same school year. Via British Colombia Ministry of Education

First-Time Grade 12:

2005-06        81%

2006-07        75%

2007-08        80%

2008-09       73%

2009-10        76%

Via Online Learning Could Be Big Part of Educational Future – Canada.com

SD 68′s “Success for All” can be accessed via the District Achievement 2011-2012 link


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