Thinking About an Online School, Charter School, Magnet School or Other Public School Option for the 2011-12 School Year?

The end of the 2010-11 school year is almost upon us, and now is the perfect time to reflect back on the school year.Whether your child is or will be enrolled in the nearest neighborhood school, an online school, a charter or magnet school a few miles from home, or if you’re lucky enough to have the option of choosing a voucher program in your state, “The” most important thing for us as parents is to choose a school that will best fit our child’s individual learning needs. It should be an innovative school that will provide our child with a world class education in a safe environment.

When choosing a school for your child it’s important to know what options are available to you and what the different options offer.

Last year I dedicated 3-days to posting about charter schools and I had the privilege of interviewing Doug Herring, Colorado Charter Examiner who writes for

Examiner.com and also writes for Charter School Insights blog. If you’re considering a charter school and want to learn more, check out these posts below and check out Doug’s sites as well.

Charter Schools: The Ultimate Handbook for Parents What about blended learning? Have you heard about this public school option? Blended learning is an educational program that combines learning in a traditional brick and mortar school with distance learning.

This past Friday, The Devil’s Advocate aired Disrupting Class Co-Author Michael Horn Explores Blended Learning. The show was hosted by Pam Benigno as she interviewed The Innosight Institute’s Michael Horn, co-author of the groundbreaking book Disrupting Class, and Jefferson County Public Schools director of student online learning Judy Bauernschmidt.

This was a great 30-minute discussion about blended learning. Thanks to the Independence Institute for posting the show on YouTube. You can watch here or below.

Maybe you’re thinking about online learning but like the brick and mortar setting because it works well for your child. This may be the alternative you’re looking for.

Choosing the right school is an important decision, a decision that we as parents should be informed and educated about.

A great place to get started is to visit The Heritage Foundation, a great website to find out what options are available in your state with the click of a mouse. Click here to see a list of your state’s school choice options as well as state contact info. Once you know what’s available to you in your state, start researching schools by visiting their website, plan a visit to the school, and ask questions, lots of questions.

And School Choice For Kids, Colorado specific, is a fabulous website “Empowering Families to Know Their Educational Options”.

Another great resource is Chosing A School For Your Child by the U.S. Department of Education.

As parents, we have a growing number of options in choosing a school, but those options vary from state to state. Learn what your options are, talk to other parents, visit schools, use the resources available to you, and ask lots of questions.

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