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Seven years ago the Centre for Distance Learning and Innovation began a virtual high school within the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Designed primarily to provide courses in specialized areas to students in rural areas, where schools have difficulty in attracting these teachers, there is concern that the opportunities provided by this virtual school are “second rate.” The purpose of the study is to examine the student achievement in standardized public exams and final course scores in the province between different delivery models, geographic location and subject area to determine whether or not students are succeeding in the virtual high school environment at the same rate as their classroom counterparts.


Originally published:

Barbour, M. K., & Mulcahy, D. (2009). Student performance in virtual schooling: Looking beyond the numbers. ERS Spectrum, 27(1), 23-30.