More subjects to roll out for regional and rural students
REGIONAL students are about to get a lot more variety when it comes to VCE subjects, as part of a major expansion of virtual learning and a new collaboration fund to support schools working together.
Minister for Education James Merlino announced last week a $22.6 million investment to provide students in rural and regional areas a greater choice of subjects, through new online and face-to-face learning options.
“Selecting VCE subjects is a big decision and all students should be able to choose what’s right for them, regardless of where they live,” Mr Merlino said.
The investment will include partnering with Distance Education Centre Victoria, the Victorian Virtual Learning Network and the Victorian School of Languages to expand and improve virtual learning.
The delivery of new VCE virtual subjects will start from the first semester next year, with all new subjects to be progressively rolled out by the end of 2021.
Grants will be made available to support and enable collaboration between schools, with teachers being able to deliver classes to students in multiple schools at the same time.
This will be done through using technologies such as video conferencing, instant messaging, chat rooms and virtual whiteboards.
Euroa Secondary College already have several students enrolled in virtual subjects and Principal Harold Cheung said it targets a very specific group of students who are highly passionate and motivated in that field.
“This is just another way of increasing access, for regional students it’s another tool that we can use to extend the opportunities for them,” Mr Cheung said.
“Ideally we would love to run those subjects in house, but when there isn’t the numbers this is a great alternative to be able to do that.”
Specialist maths, geography and history have been the most popular subjects done through the program for Euroa Secondary College.
Through this innovative way of learning, students can interact and connect in realtime with teachers and other students outside of their school in these virtual classrooms.