I had the opportunity to speak at the recent conference for the SC Association of Teacher Educators at Francis Marion University on October 17.
The pre-conference activities the night before included viewing “Waiting for Superman” and the SCATE were interested to hear more about what charter schools are an how they operate. I shared information about Charter School Law, how charter schools are developed and opened, how charters are revoked, and specifics about how virtual charter schools run.
Many found the information helpful and many mindsets were changed. Specifically, many walked away with a clear understanding that SC Charter schools are fully PUBLIC schools, teaching the same SC standards, preparing for the same state testing, providing the same SPED accomodations, and being held accountable by the same AYP standards as every other public school in the state!!!
I was very encouraged to see the level of support and collaboration that can occur among the traditional and charter school educators if clear information gets out and educators truly see what both sides are doing. Many of the professors had questions about how to best prepare pre-service teachers for careers in virtual schools. I think that is an GREAT question and I’ll be adding a new stream of blog posts specifically addressing best ways to prepare new teachers for careers in virtual education!