A prominent education journal ranks Virginia as a national leader in online learning and the use of technology to expand opportunities for students.
Virginia received a letter grade of A- from Education Week in the magazine's March 25, 2009, Technology Counts 2009: Breaking Away from Tradition report. In ranking Virginia, Education Week cited the commonwealth's low student-to-computer ratios, expanding online assessment program, rigorous technology standards and innovative online learning programs, including Virtual Virginia, which has broadened access to Advanced Placement (AP) and other challenging courses for the state's middle and high school students.
"Technology has allowed Virginia to expand access to challenging courses and help students meet the expectations of the Standards of Learning," said Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia I. Wright. "This national recognition of the commonwealth's leadership in online learning reflects the foresight of the legislators, governors and educators who understood the potential of educational technology to broaden "opportunity."
Virtual Virginia was launched in June 2004 and currently offers 40 different online courses, including 24 AP courses, other core courses, foreign languages and electives. Virtual Virginia now enrolls approximately 2,500 students from 238 Virginia middle and high schools.
In addition, nearly 5,700 students are receiving tailored remedial instruction through the Virginia Online Reading Tutorial and the Virginia Online Algebra Tutorial, which were developed by the Virginia Department of Education to help students meet the commonwealth's rigorous diploma standards.