Virtual schools see rapid enrollment growth in Ohio

More than 29,000 K-12 students attend school online in Ohio, about five times more than did seven years ago, reports the Dayton Daily News. They log onto their computers from home without ever stepping into a classroom—and some are as young as kindergarten. Doug and Linda Sellers of Beavercreek took the virtual leap from the traditional bricks-and-mortar public schools when they enrolled their four children in an e-school three years ago. The couple said it was a difficult decision and a tough sell to relatives, many of whom are teachers. They’re happy with the results. “All of our children have flourished,” said Sellers, a civilian engineer at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, touting benefits such as learning at their own pace and a much shorter school day. Nationally, Ohio ranks third in enrolled virtual-school students, behind Pennsylvania and Arizona, according to the International Association for K-12 Online Learning. Online schools have been criticized for the lack of social interaction students have with peers and limited face-to-face contact with their instructors, but supporters argue the schools reach students in ways traditional education cannot…

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