Friday, October 08, 1999

Virtual high school to open in January

The Associated Press

        FRANKFORT — It's for the aspiring high school student, one of perhaps two dozen in her graduating class, who wants that advanced chemistry class unavailable at her small school.

        It's for students in the district that cannot find a qualified Spanish teacher. It's for the college-bound student who wants to test out of calculus with advanced-placement studies. It's for homebound students, adults seeking a high school diploma and thousands of others.

        The Kentucky Virtual High School, thought to be the first time a state has had an entire such program available over the Internet, is the answer to many nagging questions about providing education to people where they can take advantage of it.

        Education Commissioner Bill Cody said the courses will be in the areas of greatest need across the state. “We don't have enough foreign language teachers or math teachers or science teachers,” Mr. Cody said in remarks prepared for the news conference Thursday to announce the program. “This project addresses that issue in a very effective way.”

        The first courses will be offered in Algebra I and II, Geometry I and II, Chemistry I and II, Physics I and II, Spanish I and II, German I and II, Latin III, Latin literature, humanities and calculus. More courses could be available by the time they are first offered in January.

        All the classes will be available online, with companion materials in some cases available via CD-ROM and video.

        “It's a major step forward in terms of equality of opportunity for all students,” said Gov. Paul Patton.

        Students will sign up at their local high school and work with a teacher trained in teaching via the Internet.

        The cost of the courses will be borne by the school district for regularly enrolled students.

        The virtual high school, an offspring of Kentucky's Commonwealth Virtual University, will use the library services already available online and the virtual university's help center.

        The Web address for the virtual high school is

        The Commonwealth Virtual University Web address is


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