When kids reach a certain age when they are ready for school, parents also need to be ready for new challenges to come. Though some have no question about kids going to a traditional school, online education has been rapidly becoming a popular option nowadays. For different personal reasons, some parents are in favor of online education. But whatever the case is, parents only want the best for their kids. That’s why it is just fair to find out if online education can really help their kids than a traditional school. Let us find out if it outweighs the advantages of attending the usual traditional school.
First of all, online schooling is actually a good idea. But maybe not for everyone. It is pretty much a big decision to make for students who are under 18 since for students above 18 years old, online education is almost always a good idea.
Here are some reasons as to why parents are leaning towards online school:
Online classes provide convenience that’s why it is becoming more and more popular in this busy world. Parents can have their own schedule as to when the kids are going to the online class.
2. Dissatisfied with local public schools
Some parents are not satisfied with the curriculum of the local schools and find that online classes allow them to have control of what and how their children are learning.
3. Medical reasons
There are home-bound kids attending online classes obviously for medical issues. This online course allows the children to continue their schooling despite medical difficulties.
4. Work-related reasons
Some kids have parents who are athletes, actors or those who are not living in one place for a long time. Online classes for them is the best solution so kids will not get behind in their education.
Those are just some of the many possible reasons as to why parents decided to enroll their kids in an online course instead of the local traditional school. They believe that online education can really help their kids. Parents who are contemplating as to whether they will let their kids attend an online school or not can ponder over the advantages and disadvantages of the matter. Truly, there is no black or white and good or bad on this matter. It only boils down as to what the parents think is the best for their kids and their family. Now, let us weigh the pros and cons of attending an online class.
The pros and Cons of Online Education
It is true that the computer is a big part of online education. However, many of the actual work is done in the same manner as it is in traditional school. For example, kids will still have to read their books, white papers, do science experiments, fill out worksheets, and take quizzes.
Some assignments and tests are printed and uploaded online. But other work is done solely online. Some schools ship studying materials and textbooks to the students. To make sure that the kids are completing their work, parents are required to work closely with them and guide them as well.
The result of research about students’ academic performance in online charter schools is a mix of good and bad reports. On average, it is found out that compared to students who are attending traditional schools, online education students performed better in their academics. But the matter is, it was focused primarily on higher education classes such as college, a master’s degree and doctorate degree rather than focused on K-12 education. Some actually had the idea of combining the online classes with some classes held face-to-face and it was often called blended instruction. It was found out that compared to traditional school students, they score as good.
Another way that we can think that online classes may be lacking is that their teachers don’t receive immediate feedback from students whether they understand the lessons or not. Also, it is hard to monitor the students and verify if they are doing their work themselves. Another thing is that sometimes, teachers are not always certified. Some critics even cited that online education systems are a good idea for states who are cash-strapped. They can cut back expenses on physical classrooms, school buildings, and even teachers. According to the National Education Policy Center’s report, some cyber schools outsource low-paid Indian workers as teachers. The cyber schools can reach more students and the maintenance for buildings are obviously lesser than the traditional schools.
Although the online education system seems to work for some families and maybe the best idea for some parents, they need to think and ask themselves many questions before enrolling their kids. They may ask, What is the ratio between students and teachers in the online class? Does the curriculum offer a good interaction between students or it’s more of a self-paced program? How do they assess the performance of your child? What is the available support for the students and parents? Does online education really help my kid? And more questions go on. The parents need to research, ask around and maybe ask for reliable sources on what’s best for their kids and their circumstances. They should also consider their kids’ capacity and abilities. They can evaluate their kids’ behavior if they can cope up with online classes and doing things on their own or they are better at doing it with physical rooms and classmates that they can talk and work with.
Whatever the case is, whether the parents decide to enroll their kids in the online course or the traditional school, they should remember that they are the primary educator of their children. The kids may or may not progress and thrive in the online education system, because sometimes it is not more on the system, it’s more on what work they put into it. Parents should not leave it alone to the institution, but they should guide and support their kids in every way possible.