Lawmakers have had lengthy battles this session over teacher pay, South Dakota’s funding formula, and a sales tax hike for education. Most of the money lawmakers are considering for public schools are mandated for teacher salaries, but a sliver of it is dedicated to increasing eLearning. If lawmakers approve the governor’s plan, the E-learning program could receive a $1 million infusion.
The concept of E-learning has changed dramatically. This is not your correspondence course from decades past. Some students use text-based courses, others rely on video and online exercises, and some even meet virtually with their teachers face to face. Travel to Baltic High School to see how student Brooke Hart manages her distance course in Spanish. Meet her teacher, Gayla Martens, who is hours away but talks with Hart each week, and find out how eMentor Angie Lardy helps students at Baltic succeed through online learning.
Then hear from Mary Cundy, the E-learning high school principal at the NSU Center for Statewide E-learning in Aberdeen. She delves into the purpose of the program and how public schools can utilize the course options free of charge. Cundy also points to challenges and opportunities that come with non-traditional classes.