Innovating at Last? The Rise of Blended Learning in Charter Schools
By Michael B. Horn and Tricia Maas
While many charter schools have succeeded in helping students, they have done so with an educational model that differs only at the margins from traditional schools. Only now, and only in small numbers, are charters beginning to experiment with blended learning, an innovative way to deliver instruction more efficiently and effectively, in part through technology. As a chapter in Hopes, Fears, & Reality: A Balanced Look at American Charter Schools in 2012, a project of the Center on Reinventing Public Education, this paper seeks to illustrate how blended learning can allow charter schools to fundamentally redefine schooling.
The Hope, Fears & Reality project is described as follows:
“One of the main goals of the charter school movement at its founding was to provide new school options for families that wanted and needed them. Another was to foster innovation, for charter schools themselves and traditional public schools around them. Are charters living up to those promises?
“Edited by Robin Lake, the 7th edition of Hopes, Fears, & Reality focuses on growth and innovation and presses charter leaders to consider whether they are fully using their flexibility and autonomy on behalf of students. Experts assess the national landscape and provide possible guidance for the charter sector in light of the demand for better schools, impending Common Core standards, and tight budgets.”
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