Currently, I have the pleasure of attending classes taught by former New York Regents Chancellor, Robert Bennett. He is still active in Regents decisions which means I get the chance to hear weekly from someone at the top of the ladder when it comes to educational policy-making in New York State. It's like getting a behind-the-scenes look at education.
Tonight's topic in class was high school graduation requirements. Chancellor Bennett warned us that it was an area the the Regents Board was investigating, and would ultimately be changing in the reletive near future. These changes would most likely involve the credit hours needed to graduated and required seat time in class, but neither of these things will be quick or easy to implement. Both would require either hiring more teachers or increasing the pay of those who are already employed, and this seems improbable considering the state of New York laid off 58,000 teachers this September.
So how do we make high school more rigorous and expansive without further crippling the state budget?
I read an article the other day about a school district in Ohio experimenting with the idea of moving classes online in the event of a snow day. This idea is not without some serious flaws (what happens to kids without Internet access, for example?), but it has potential nonetheless.
Would it be possible to extend seat time, so to speak, without extending the school day?
How can this be mandated?
What will it look like?
What happens to students who do not have Internet access?
How will we prepare teachers?
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