Tag Archives: virtual

‘Virtual Schools’ Bill Creates a Flap in House; ‘Innovative Schools’ Stalls

A Republican-sponsored bill dealing with “virtual classes” in public schools, which passed the Senate unanimously last month, inspired some hostile questioning from Democrats on the House floor Thursday before passing 69-24.
Sponsor Rep. Harry Brooks, R-Knoxville, said the bill, as amended, would simply allow public schools to charge a “tuition” fee to other students who take a “virtual education program” class over the Internet.
But Rep. Mike Stewart, D-Nashville, said the bill would tie into a separate Brooks-sponsored bill, HB1030, allows for-profit companies to operate virtual schools.
In tandem, Stewart contended, the two bills would be a “momentous change” that would have for-profit recruiting multiple students who pay them, then “send the tab to our public school systems.” The public schools would thus be supplying the courses that make money for the private schools, he said.
Brooks said Stewart was mistaken and, by allowing a charge for attendance, the measure “does just the opposite of what you’re perceiving.”

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Virtual Classes Passes

The Senate has unanimously approved a bill that allows home-schooled students or those enrolled in private schools to take “virtual courses” offered over the Internet by private schools.
The bill by Senate Speaker Pro Tempore Jamie Woodson (SB714) repeals a provision in current law that effectively permits only students in public schools offering the courses to enroll in “virtual schools.”
Under the bill, students from nonpublic schools may be charged a fee for taking the virtual courses.
Woodson, R-Knoxville, says the bill will be a boon to students who cannot get a course they need now, such as a foreign language class for a homeschooled student whose parents are not familiar with the foreign language.
The bill is sponsored in the House by Rep. Harry Brooks, R-Knoxville, who has successfully moved it through about half the necessary committee votes.