Illinois Virtual School
Illinois Virtual School (IVS) is the Illinois State Board of Education’s (ISBE) statewide virtual school. ISBE established IVS as a supplemental online program in 2001 with a mission to provide high quality expanded educational opportunities to all students in Illinois grades 5-12. IVS functions as a supplemental program to students enrolled in public or private schools or as a full program provider to homeschool students. IVS offers 160 original credit courses taught by, and 28 credit recovery courses managed by, Illinois certified teachers. Most IVS teachers are employed by their local districts and have all been trained in online instruction and pedagogy through IVS-PD, the professional learning arm of IVS. IVS courses are aligned to Illinois and relevant learning standards and operate in compliance with NCAA and College Board (AP) requirements. Through its role as the statewide representative of online and blended learning in Illinois, IVS provides leadership to accelerate the adoption and use of online learning by educating schools and districts looking to expand high quality learning options for their students. IVS-PD offers professional learning online programs for educators.
Projects and highlights:
- Education Partner: IVS spearheaded the Remote Education Awareness Campaign to provide districts with the framework for providing alternative educational experiences in line with the Illinois’ Remote Education legislation, HB3223 (Public Act 97-0339). Through no-cost partnerships with local schools, districts and education agencies, IVS is able to bring high quality online options to middle and high school students. Resident districts retain responsibility for the student, along with providing site-specific assistance to students who require it.
- Quality Curriculum: IVS is dedicated to providing the highest quality curriculum to Illinois students. All courses are evaluated based on a proprietary evaluation rubric applied to the entire catalog annually. IVS partners with Quality Matters for course design review. Quality Matters (QM) is a faculty-centered, peer review process that is designed to certify the quality of online courses and support continuous improvement.
- Career and College Focus: IVS offers multiple State aligned CTE Programs including a five-course suite of Agriculture courses supported through a partnership with FCAE Illinois. Along with CTE, IVS is expanding high stakes test prep to include robust AP Exam review as well as SAT and ACT stand alone, teacher facilitated, review courses.
- Transitional Math Pathways: More and more colleges are reporting higher remediation rates for incoming freshmen, especially in Math. IVS is working on a multi-year Transitional Math Pathway project as part of the Illinois Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Act (PA 9-674) to improve high school graduate education and career readiness. By providing a statewide, credit portable, online option, IVS hopes to assist in preparing Illinois high school students for their future.
- Data Driven Program Management: IVS relies on analysis of both quantitative and qualitative data to drive program level strategy. Sources of data include student completion rates by course and teacher, enrollment trends, operational budget health, helpdesk reports and stakeholder surveys; all data is assessed using both short- and long-term models.
- Professional Development: IVS is partners with the Illinois State Board of Education to host a number of professional development opportunities. IVS offers both self-paced and teacher facilitated professional growth experiences spanning a wide range of topics.