Hybrid learning pilot program deemed a success in PA

Written by Matt Paul, Reporter/Producer | Oct 18, 2013 5:02 AM

(Lebanon) -- The results are in from the first year of Pennsylvania's hybrid learning pilot program, and the state Department of Education is encouraging more schools to get involved.

The 15 schools participating met or exceeded program goals in academic performance, student engagement, parent confidence and teacher satisfaction.

Acting Education Secretary Carolyn Dumaresq touted the initiative while touring hybrid learning classrooms at Lebanon High School.

"Eighty-eight percent achieved higher academic performance in the hybrid classes than in the traditional model, and I think that is speaking to the student engagement and the addressing of the different learning styles of our students," she says.

The hybrid model combines direct teacher instruction, group activities and independent learning through technology.

Lebanon junior Alicia Haitos says the trio of learning methods melds nicely in hybrid classrooms.

"In the regular classroom, if you didn't understand how the teacher taught it, you might not have the time to learn it as well," she explains.

Federal funds helped launch Pennsylvania's pilot last year. Dumaresq says she'll try to find more of those dollars to expand it, and search for ways to support hybrid learning in the state's existing education budget.

In addition to LHS, schools in the Lower Dauphin, Manheim Central, Lancaster and Eastern Lancaster County districts took part in the first year of the statewide pilot program.

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