The Clarion-Ledger reports that as increasing numbers of students turn to online courses, the traditional summer school model is becoming a thing of the past. Through Mississippi’s Department of Education Virtual School, more than 600 students have signed up for 12 free, online courses. This represents a major increase compared to last year, when only 26 students elected to take the online classes. Hank Bounds, state superintendent of education believes that in addition to opening up more options for students, online courses are a more cost-effective way of addressing the educational needs of students over the summer. The online program has had a positive effect on at least one student. Mark Maxwell discovered that he needed a full diploma and not a GED to enter a linguistics program. Without the virtual school, he would not have been able to take and pass the required class on time…