Virtual Schools & Academic Honesty


As virtual education continues to expand, teachers, administrators, and principals are constantly seeking ways to improve rapidly changing programs. While virtual schools provide students the opportunity to learn at an individualized pace, to attend school at a flexible location, and to fill in gaps in learning, educators are still working to decipher the best way to ensure academic integrity and to combat cheating.
In-person exams are one safeguard for academic integrity. Another safeguard is requiring students to have a licensed proctor facilitate major assessments for virtual courses.
Surprisingly, students are not the only ones culpable for the lack of academic integrity in virtual learning. While virtual schools often require parent involvement and guidance, there is a fine line between monitoring and “dishonest intervention.” Some schools require parents to have their own login, allowing them to follow children without actually submitting work for them.
“If you look across the range of full-time online learning programs … there are different parent roles, and some programs involve the learning coach and parent at a much higher level, said International Association for K-12 Online Learning President Susan Patrick. “Each of those programs is developing their own guide for parents in terms of [their] role.”