Educational options are individualized learning experiences provided by schools as an alternative to traditional courses.

Like a traditional class or course, an “educational option” is a structured learning opportunity with defined learning goals, planned learning activities, and standards for evaluating student learning, all coordinated by a qualified educator.

Otherwise, educational options are very different from traditional courses. They may take a variety of forms, including internships, mentorships, independent studies, and other alternative formats. Much of the learning experience may take place outside of school and outside the regular school day.

The advantages of educational options include flexible pacing, flexible scheduling, and opportunities to tailor content based on individual interests. Providing educational options may also allow districts to offer learning opportunities for one or a small group of students when a there is not sufficient critical mass to create a traditional class or course.

Historically, the primary drawback of educational options has been the relatively large amount of staff time per student required for curriculum planning and evaluating student learning when compared to traditional courses. Monitoring and maintaining student progress and motivation through the learning experience often requires additional thought and effort on the part of both student and teacher when learning takes place outside a traditional classroom.

The purpose of this initiative is help Ohio schools more easily and efficiently develop and manage quality individualized educational options so they can provide more students with opportunities to student advanced topics in depth, to explore areas of personal interest, and cultivate a sense of personal responsibility for learning.

Specify REsponsible Staff Member

A credentialed teacher must be responsible in reviewing the instructional plan, providing or supervising instruction, and evaluating student performance. This could be the person specified for the service on the student's WEP, which could include:

  • Gifted Intervention Specialist
  • Regular education teacher in the content area of service
  • Media/technology specialist
  • Other credentialed educator

Parent Approval

Parental permission is necessary for students under age eighteen.

parentpermission.docClick here for a parent permission form template.

Superintendent Approval

Superintendent approval is necessary prior to student participation.

superintendentapproval.docClick here for a superintendent approval form template.

Approval forms are in Word and can be modified as needed.

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