ED-WATCH: WV AUTHORIZES ONLINE PUBLIC SCHOOLING

West Virginia educational officials have eliminated the state RESA’s and the Office of Educational Performing Audits (OEPA) among other cutbacks, while expanding home schooling and authorizing county school boards to offer virtual school, where students in kindergarten through high school can learn online.
Under the law approved by the Legislature and Gov. Jim Justice, a county board or a multicounty consortium can create a virtual instruction program and contract with online education providers starting July 1.

Elementary school students from kindergarten through fifth grade won’t be allowed until the program has operated for one full school year.

The law requires counting eligible students in the school district’s enrollment for determining state aid and subjecting them to the same state assessment requirements as other students to receive a diploma.

It allows them to participate in school sports and other extracurricular activities as well as “blended programs” with both classroom and online learning.