New AFPF Brief

September 6, 2013

AFPF releases a paper on great
opportunity for education reform today, explaining the exciting new frontier
that virtual schools provide in the struggle for economic freedom.

Arlington, VA (PRWEB) September 06, 2013

Today, Americans for Prosperity
Foundation released a policy brief explaining the exciting new frontier that
virtual schools provide in the struggle for economic freedom. The report is
available here.

“Thanks to the Internet, a quality education
is a click away for thousands of students who were previously unsatisfied with
their brick-and-mortar public school,” AFP Foundation Policy Analyst Casey
Given explains in the report.

Since virtual schools aren’t bound by
enrollment caps and geographic location like brick-and-mortar schools, Given
argues that they have unprecedented potential to extend educational choice to
every student with an Internet connection. The policy brief then explains the
history of online learning, its various forms, and its contemporary challenges.

full copy of the policy brief is available here.

“Several states stubbornly refuse to expand educational freedom online. In fact, many conservative educational reformers are even scaling back their states’ existing online programs, often in the name of preserving ‘local control’ for district school boards,”
according to Given.

From New Jersey’s withdrawal of approval for the first two virtual schools to open up in their state to Pennsylvania’s targeted cuts to online learning, the report suggests that better techniques need to be implemented to evaluate and approve virtual schools.

“Instead of one-size-fits-all evaluations, states should more effectively evaluate virtual schools’ performances by focusing on progress rather than benchmarks. States should
evaluate whether a student’s knowledge has improved rather than if their
knowledge is sufficient to pass a state standardized test.”

The policy brief serves well as a primer on a part of the school choice debate that is often overlooked by education reformers.