No two online special education programs are the same. Make sure you are choosing one that will fit your district’s or school’s needs by considering the following questions:
1. Is the system “teacher friendly”?
• Are materials, course plans, and enrollment tools well organized and easy for teachers to use?
2. Does the system include student performance reports that will help teachers spend their time on the right students and the right topics?
• Are reports easily accessed by teachers and administrators?
3. Does the program content align to applicable state standards?
• Are there clear performance objectives provided that match these standards?
• Is there efficacy to support that the program effectively helps students meet the standards?
4. Does the program provide content that is accessible and relevant to students of varying abilities and needs?
• Is text provided at a range of reading levels?
5. Is the format of the program interesting, visually appealing, and age appropriate?
6. Can the system be customized to support personalized education plans?
• Does the system include a wide range of acceleration and remediation activities?
7. Does the program content foster student engagement?
• Are students required to actively participate in lessons?
8. Does the program provide students with immediate, applicable, and varied feedback that is embedded within activities and assessments?
9. Is a variety of media used to engage different learning styles?
• Are students exposed to single concepts or skills from multiple angles?
10. Do lessons and activities build upon concepts and skills in a logical manner that supports development and understanding of the connections between them?
• Are students required to master each learning objective before moving on to the next?
• Will a subject be presented differently if a student is struggling to master it?