As students across the country switched overnight to emergency virtual classroom operations last year, teachers and administrators did their best to bring lesson plans and student interactions to an online setting.
Despite best efforts, one year later the majority of parents feel that their child experienced COVID-slide in their education last year. In a recent survey, more than 65% of parents indicated that they believe their child will need additional schooling this summer to make up for last year’s learning loss.
Yet, students who attended established Stride K12-powered schools didn’t experience the same learning loss as their peers in brick and mortar conversions last year.In fact, 64% of parents recognize the value of established online educators and are considering these options for the future.
The pandemic confirmed what we already knew: there’s a huge difference between learning outcomes at a brick-and-mortar school forced to go virtual and a seasoned online learning platform.
I’ll be the first to admit that Stride had a distinct advantage this year, with more than 20 years of experience in virtual education. Over the last two decades, we’ve discovered how parents, teachers, and curriculum can make or break a student’s experience in an online learning environment. Here are three key tenets that Stride implements for successful virtual schooling:
1) Parents are not trained teachers, and most would prefer not to be their child’s sole educator. Instead, they need support from their ‘village.’ Stride provides learning coaches (parents, guardians, or other trusted adults) with tools that empower them and ensure students are able to meet academic goals. Specially designed programming and resources, as well as opportunities for learning coaches to connect with one another, empower them and ensure students are able to meet academic goals. Established support systems for Stride learning coaches are just one reason our schools have an 80% parent satisfaction rate.
2) Stride educators thrive in a virtual setting. Teachers choose to work in a virtual environment for a variety of reasons. Many have even switched to online education after teaching in a brick-and-mortar setting. Because these educators learn how to establish a successful virtual classroom from day one, parents and learning coaches overwhelmingly believe that Stride teachers are more competent.
We also recognize that technology is constantly shifting, and provide on-going, future-focused training for our educators to ensure that they are prepared to meet the needs of the next generation. With one of our teachers going viral for her educational TikTok videos, there’s no wonder our classes have a 97% student attendance rate.
3) Parents and educators provide a vital foundation for student success, but without providing proven curriculum our efforts would be fruitless. Over the last twenty years, we’ve learned that virtual schools cannot simply use the same techniques as brick-and-mortar schools and expect the same results. Stride-powered educators utilize established learning objectives and thoughtfully developed instructional online experiences with animations, interactive games, videos, and text to help students master subject areas.
That’s why three times as many parents find Stride teachers more competent, two times as many find Stride course materials more effective and over 80% were satisfied with Stride's curriculum. When students are engaged in interactive learning, we see higher attendance rates, test scores, and parent satisfaction. Virtual learning is here to stay, which is a win-win for students and parents alike, who have learned amid a tumultuous year that virtual learning can be for anyone.