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Blended Learning: Making the Most of Resources

by Andra Cernavskis


Article excerpt

Can Blended Learning Solve the US Teacher Drought?

In education, technology is being proposed as a possible solution to the widespread teacher shortages reported across the country. While some propose higher pay to encourage more of America’s brightest college graduates to enter the profession, others are looking for answers in blended learning, asking how districts can use online technologies to refashion classrooms and make the teachers we already have more effective.

Our take

Using Blended Learning to Spread Fewer Teachers Further

The role of a real human being to instruct students from K-20, and beyond, is not likely to be replaced by technology any time soon, particularly in fields of study that require a deep level of learning and critical thinking. But with teaching shortages becoming a problem around the country, school systems are looking for ways to ease the burden on existing staff who are often called on to do more with less. Blended learning may be one option that holds potential. How might this type of model impact your teachers, and learners?

Blended learning pairs experienced with new teachers, using technology to minimize administrative burdens and offering the ability to reach larger numbers of students. Some examples in California—Rocketship and KIPP—may be worth studying as administrators consider the tradeoffs that might be made between teachers and technology. It’s a concept to consider as part of the strategic planning process, with a focus on areas of greatest staffing need.