Driving blended learning at the state level

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

As blended learning continues to grow, one of the challenges education leaders are facing is the fact that knowledge of the concept spreads faster than expertise on how to foster and support it. Given this problem, it was exciting to see a new resource released yesterday by The Learning Accelerator (TLA) titled, A Framework for Cultivating High-Quality Blended Learning at the State Level. The framework provides a comprehensive overview of levers that state leaders can use for “catalyzing and accelerating blended learning.” Below are a few highlights from the framework.

Eliminate policy barriers. One of the major challenges to implementing blended learning is that many state policies were created for a factory-model education system and are ill suited to blended learning. For example, policies that require that funding and academic credits be awarded based on seat-time often conflict with blended-learning schools’ efforts to personalize the time and pace of learning. Recognizing these challenges, the TLA framework encourages state policymakers to “Identify, analyze and eliminate myths, disincentives, or disablers of blended learning from the system,” and to “[l]everage enabling policies that foster development and support for high-quality blended models.”

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