Most summer classes for extended learning to be available online

Summer extended-learning classes will look a little different at the high school level this year in School District 51.

Budget constraints led the district to rethink summer learning costs. Instead of offering a traditional classroom experience for all grades, the district will host a uniform program for kindergarten through eighth-grade students June 14 through July 15 and allow each high school to outline its own summer learning programs.

Classes for ninth- through 12th-graders at Grand Junction High School will be offered on a computer during either a June 1- June 10 session, so they can replace a low score in a class taken during the school year, or during a longer June 1 to June 30 session, when juniors and seniors can take new classes for $100 per class. One person will be available to help answer questions related to computer and subject matter this summer at the high school, but the district will save the cost of hiring multiple classroom teachers.

Online classes have been offered to high school students in the Grand Valley for years during the traditional school year, said Jason Eidinger, assistant principal at Grand Junction High School. The courses usually are used for grade replacement after a student hasn’t performed well in a classroom setting, he said.

Online courses also have been used in the summertime, just not exclusively until now.

“It became more important for us this year because summer school is shortened,” Eidinger said.

Central High School students taking summer courses also will do so on a computer. The school is offering students science, language arts, math, social studies and health classes online June 1 through July 2 for $100 per class. Registration is first-come, first-served.

Fruita Monument High School will offer summer learning from June 1 to June 30. Students can attend if they have grade-point averages of 2.0 or below or a counselor recommends they attend courses. Fruita will offer two math courses with a classroom teacher, but most of the summer courses will be taken online. The program is first-come, first-served and does not include a fee.

A brief extended-learning period will be offered without charge for Fruita Monument students wishing to improve F or D grades June 1 to June 11.

Palisade High School students can take classes in the school’s computer lab June 1 through July 2 for $75 a class or pay $25 to attend extended learning June 1 to June 11 to improve an F or D grade in a class taken during the school year.

R-5 High School will offer online classes that students from all local high schools can take at home May 25 through July 30. It costs $100 to take each half-credit class through this program, and students must register for the courses between 2:30 and 4 p.m. May 25 at R-5.

Research about the results from online learning is mixed. Some studies indicate online learners learn more or about the same as those taking courses in a classroom setting. A February report from the Colorado Department of Education, though, showed students from most online programs in the state scored below the state average on Colorado Student Assessment Plan tests in 2009.


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