Local Schools Begin Second Year of Online Learning

The second year of the online courses offered Putnam-Northern Westchester BOCES begins on Thursday. Four new courses are being offered this year.

For the second year, some local students will not be sitting to learn in a classroom. Instead, they would  through a regional consortium of several school districts in partnership with Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES Curriculum Center. 

Participating districts include: Bedford, Chappaqua, Katonah-Lewisboro, Lakeland, Mamaroneck, Ossining, Peekskill and Yorktown. In addition, Ardsley, Croton-Harmon, Dobbs Ferry and Valhalla are piloting the program this fall.

The launch of the second year of the online courses begins on Thursday, Sept. 13 when students from 13 high schools across Westchester will meet their teachers and classmates, learn about the technology that will be used and be introduced to the course work. 

The orientation runs from 8 a.m. until noon in the School Services Building. These courses have been developed in concert with the participating districts. They were not content to just take a course off the shelf; they wanted to design something richer and more meaningful for their students, school officials said. 

In addition, there are four new course offerings this year. New course offerings include: Anthropology, the History of Media and the Presidency, Historical Geology and Paleontology, and 21st Century Literacy.

Using live webinars, chats, forums and social networking tools, students will be able to create resources, share work virtually or in real time and learn from a variety of media.

Students enrolled now have access to courses not currently available at their home school, but they can interact with students they wouldn’t otherwise have the chance to meet.

In order to create a greater sense of community, the courses will include two day-long gatherings of students and teachers at ’ Yorktown campus as well as some live, online discussions and activities in which an entire class participates at one time.

Ellen Lane contributed to this report.

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