Distance education schools in New South Wales deliver using a range of methods tailored to individual student needs and circumstances. Teachers connect with their students through paper-based materials and other activities distributed by mail, online learning management systems (Moodle and Canvas), telephone, web lessons (Adobe Connect and REACT), onsite study days, learning/outreach hubs and field service visits.
An increasing amount of teaching and learning is moving online to allow for the immediacy of contact with teachers at the point of need. Teaching and learning programs are individualised per student.
Te Kura is New Zealand’s state distance education provider. We focus on authentic contexts for our students based on Big Picture philosophy whenever possible. Today, we use online learning for much of our educational provision. High quality online learning uses technology as a tool to help in providing personalised learning programmes which address learners’ individual needs and promote their engagement and achievement.
The use of online technology provides an environment for our students to collaborate with each other and interact with their teachers. It’s an efficient and engaging way of delivering interactive resources. The degree to which online delivery is “blended” with the overall educational approach is crucial. We see the interaction between educators and learners as the heart of the educational process, and we also respect the role of family and whanau in that process.
Te Kura has teachers based in regional offices across New Zealand. Each full-time Te Kura student has a nominated supervisor with them where their learning takes place and a Te Kura learning advisor works with each student, their supervisor and whānau to develop a personalised learning programme based on their interests and aspirations.
Distance education schools in Queensland deliver using a range of methods tailored to individual student needs and circumstances. Teachers connect with their students through online and paper-based materials and other activities distributed by mail, online learning management systems (Learning Place), telephone, web lessons (Blackboard Collaborate), learning/outreach hubs, mini-schools and field service visits.
An increasing amount of teaching and learning is moving online to allow for the immediacy of contact with teachers at the point of need. Teaching and learning programs are individualised for each student.
At Open Access College we teach on-line. Lessons with small groups of students are timetabled and students and teachers connect in real time using the WebEx platform. Teachers are encouraged to provide students with content before the lesson using a range of tools such as Edpuzzle and Audacity. Students then have the background to work collaboratively in their online lesson where teachers verify and challenge their understanding. After lessons students are set tasks to consolidate their learning of concepts.
Most teachers use Moodle as a repository for the learning resources and Google Classroom is increasingly being used as a way to work on a task and provide feedback seamlessly. Students are working on their task in Google Classroom and teachers can provide feedback on the work in Google Classroom as you would in a face to face classroom.
The story of the Tasmanian eSchool dates back over 90 years, with the establishment of Distance Education in the state. So, while the Tasmanian eSchool is one of Tasmania’s newest schools (2010), it has one of the oldest histories.The Tasmanian eSchool provides an online K-10 educational program supported by face-to-face learning opportunities, to achieve curriculum diversity and to promote student engagement.
The school has a campus in the North (Rocherlea), and in the South (Derwent Park). Teachers develop and deliver online Australian Curriculum courses in addition to interest based short courses. Many students have individualised learning programs based around the General Capabilities (Australian Curriculum).
In addition to delivering educational programs to students the eSchool provides two services to support the Tasmanian community. These include: The Hospital Schools Program in Hobart and Launceston; and the STARS Program (northern campus) which develops the social skills of students with a diagnosis of High Functioning Autism.
Senior secondary subjects are delivered by the Online Learning Programs for Years 11 and 12, which is supported by high schools and colleges across the state. This is managed centrally by Curriculum Services. Curriculum Services also offers a program of courses to support gifted and talented students - Gifted Online - and a selection of other K - 10 courses to supplement local offerings such as languages.
The Distance Education Centre Victoria (DECV) is a Victorian government school based in Thornbury, Melbourne. DECV is the state’s leading virtual school, offering around 135 courses online including VCE subjects. With over 4000 students from Foundation to Year 12, more students study at DECV than any other school in Victoria.
Compared to how we operated in the past, DECV is a very different place today. All of our courses are delivered online using the Scaffold (Moodle-based) Learning Management System. These courses are supported by scheduled online lessons in Adobe Connect and print materials are used when it is pedagogically sound to do so.
Our specialist teachers provide students with individual learning and support and they are dedicated to building the confidence and resilience of every student. Like any school, our teachers support and interact with students daily, but they do so in a different way to most schools; they do so virtually.
In Western Australia the Government distance education schools, the School of Isolated and Distance Education (SIDE) and the five schools of the air, teach predominantly on-line. Teachers connect with their students through web conferencing, video conferencing, email, telephone, and face to face. At SIDE Moodle is used as a learning management system.
In the primary years students are offered a blended model of learning that can be individualised. Secondary students’ needs are met by specialist teachers working with programs that are designed to be used in an online environment. Some blended learning models are used where pedagogically relevant. The use of on-line technology allows our students to work collaboratively with their classmates and connect around the world.
All three schools of Distance Education deliver to their students using a blended delivery model.
At both Katherine School of the Air (KSA) and the Northern Territory School of Distance Education (NTSDE) Moodle is used as a learning platform across the schools. In the Early Years it is mainly used as a repository for online lesson recordings or instructional clips and resources that the home tutor will access to enhance a paper-based unit of work. However Moodle has an increasing level of significance as students move through the school. In Years 3 to 6, students are explicitly taught how to use Moodle, so they have greater independence with their learning. In Middle Years, individual courses in core subjects are created to deliver content, house resources, engage students in collaborative forums and for students to upload completed learning and assessment tasks.
At NTSDE for students in Year 10 – 12 access their subject materials are via Moodle. Each Moodle site allows students to view and interact with subject material, upload work and communicate electronically with teachers and other students.
At Alice Springs School of the Air (ASSOA) the students visit a class website to access their program. Each teacher is responsible for one or two year levels and their class website is created using Google Sites. All students upload their work to Google Drive shared folders where the teachers provide with just in time feedback.
To interact with their teachers and classmates all students log onto our video conferencing tool called REACT (Remote Education and Conferencing Tool). This is where they enjoy explicit teaching and learning for their relevant year of schooling, class discussions and collaboration sessions, whole school assemblies etc.
Emails, phone calls and face to face meetings are the other methods used for communication and explicit teaching and learning.