CO wants to create agency to monitor online schools

With school board members angered by online schools' lax standard, legislation would create a new bureaucracy to manage the new sector.
Written by ZDNET Editors, Contributor

The Colorado legislature has proposed a bill to create a regulatory arm for online education, while allowing school districts more local control over online education programs, reports the Rocky Mountains News.

The measure proposed by Sen. Sue Windels, chairwoman of the state Senate Education Committee, was created after an online charter school in a small district operated online "learning centers" throughout the state with only adult mentors as supervisors. This riled some school board members. Among other things, the proposed bill would require teachers in online programs to hold Colorado teaching licenses.

Under Windels' bill a memorandum of understanding would have to be negotiated with the local school board. The MOU would cover topics ranging from location of the center to advertising and enrollment procedures.

A new Division of Online Learning would have control over school districts that run statewide online programs. The districts would have to demonstrate the capacity to adequately supervise them in more than a dozen areas, including curriculum, finance and delivery of services to handicapped and non-English-speaking students.

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