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Although we are aware of the rapid rise of online schools and how they are revolutionizing the way our children learn, how many of us have stopped to ponder the role our teachers play in this virtual learning environment. Setting high standards for education seems like the easy part. Ensuring that our children can match up to those standards is where we seem to be falling behind, and that is something only our teachers can help us with. Teachers truly are the most fundamental block in terms of laying the educational foundation for our children and we really should be supporting them in a more comprehensive manner. For starters, we need to address the core issue of teachers leaving the profession for more lucrative opportunities in other sectors.
Teaching has always been considered a noble profession. As students, we have all admired and looked up to one of our teachers at some point in time. Although online learning platforms have been providing us with viable alternatives for independent learning, they haven’t been able to replace the teacher. In most cases, guidance is required and students as well as parents still rely upon the teacher to help them assess and monitor progress.
While it is widely known and acknowledged that teachers play an important role in society, not many pay attention to the salaries they are paid. This is one obstacle online schools have helped overcome. In traditional schools, teachers are expected to take on a host of responsibilities in addition to their primary job of teaching course curriculum. This has added a huge amount of stress considering the fact that they are already under significant pressure to deliver in terms of academic results. In most cases, funding to the school is dependent on student grades, which means teachers are expected to deliver on those counts as well as manage additional responsibilities that are assigned to them.
This is one of the core reasons why virtual learning schools have made significant headway in terms of transforming our education system. These platforms allow teachers a world of flexibility in terms of managing course curriculum and delivering the kind of quality education most teachers aspire to achieve. Additionally, they spare them the hassle of having to deal with secondary responsibilities that have nothing to do with their core job of imparting education. Is it any wonder then as to why the teaching profession is witnessing a mass exodus?
Online learning environments offer students access to avenues that are characteristic of 21st century technology. While traditional schools have served us well in the past, they can no longer be relied upon to deliver the kind of knowledge we need to impart to our children today. With rapidly changing business environments, students are expected to adapt accordingly, and our current education system is failing at helping them achieve that. Solutions and methodologies that once worked can no longer be expected to help us resolve the challenges we face in the Information Age.
However, when you consider the different issues plaguing the current education system combined with funding issues, it is plain to see that we need more than just an overhaul of the education system. We need to adopt different methods of teaching and learning, as well as more proactive methods for assessing and evaluating a student’s strengths and weaknesses. This is where virtual learning environments have proved to be most useful. Not only do they offer students, parents and teachers a great deal of flexibility but they also open up a number of different options that were once unavailable due to the limitations of traditional schooling environments.
In traditional schools, teachers are constrained in terms of options when it comes to teaching. Geographically, they have access to a limited student population. However, with online schools, they can now interact with students from virtually any part of the world. Not only does this open up numerous opportunities for teachers but it also helps them interact with a diverse student population that is not constrained by physical location. In addition to that, they are also provided with the freedom to take up opportunities that are available elsewhere without having to physically relocate.
Teachers living in one part of the world can now teach students from practically anywhere, as long as they have access to a computer and an internet connection. In this manner, not only do virtual learning schools provide teachers with the flexibility to get the most out of their job, but they also help teachers by providing them with access to opportunities that are economically viable without having to undergo major changes in terms of their residence. Furthermore, in some cases, teachers are not limited by restrictions requiring them to teach students from a single school. They have the freedom to interact with and teach students from different schools with diverse backgrounds.
Most teachers take up the profession with a view to delivering more than just an education to children. They want to make a difference in their lives. For years, teachers have been entrusted with the responsibility of molding our children into model citizens. However, over time, their core responsibility has evolved into one that has them obsessed with their students’ grades. Online learning environments have helped teachers get back to what they love doing most – Teaching. They have provided them with the tools that enable and empower them to focus on the core learning process of their students while ensuring their students achieve the desired grades.
While online learning platforms have certainly opened up new avenues in terms of delivering information and independent learning, the importance of our teachers and the role they play should never be forgotten. They add a dimension to our lives that technology can never replace, which is why it is essential that we combine the power of online schools with the experience of our teachers to deliver the best possible education system for our children.