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Rule Number:160-8-1-.01
Georgia Virtual School Program   Print Rule
 

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Code: IFBGD

160-8-1-.01 GEORGIA VIRTUAL SCHOOL.

(1) DEFINITIONS.

(a) Administrative Costs - expenses incurred by the local school systems for

delivery of online learning courses via the Georgia Virtual School. Examples

include: certain maintenance and operations expenses and facilitator stipends.

(b) Approved Entity – local school system online learning program or private

school online learning program that agrees to operate under the terms and conditions

established by the State Board of Education.

(c) Eligible Student – student, age 21 years or younger, who attends a public or

private school or is in a home study program in the state of Georgia.

(d) Facilitator – full-time, part-time, contracted, and instructional or support staff

from public, private or an Educational Technology Center (ETC) who has been

selected to act as the designated contact for the Georgia Virtual School and students

in their school or district. ETC staff shall act as facilitators for home study students.

(e) Full Time Equivalent (FTE) – formula that divides high school students’

regular school day into six reporting segments or their equivalent for funding

purposes.

(f) Georgia Virtual School – Georgia Department of Education instructional

program offering students online learning courses in accordance with O.C.G.A. § 20-

2-319.1 hereto referred to as the Georgia Virtual School.

(g) Learning Management System – instructional technology used to teach online

classes.

(h) Local Teacher-Led Virtual Course – a type of virtual course in which the local

school provides the highly qualified teacher and course materials, and Georgia Virtual

School provides the standards-based curriculum, enrollment of students and locally

provided teacher in Georgia Virtual School courses, training and full-use of virtual

classroom tools, technical support to locally provided teachers and students, and

instructional support to locally provided teachers.

(i) Online Learning Courses – State Board of Education-approved courses of

instruction directly correlated to the state-approved curriculum that is delivered via

the Internet or in any other electronic medium not involving on-site interaction with a

teacher.

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(j) Regular School Day – schedule of courses taken as part of public school

students’ regular school day which consists of six segments or its FTE equivalent.

For private and home study students the regular school day is the equivalent of four

and one half hours during 180 instructional days.

(k) Seat – equivalent of one student enrolled in an online learning course for one

half unit credit.

(l) Summer School – time period in excess of 180 instructional days.

(2) REQUIREMENTS.

(a) General.

1. The Georgia Virtual School is authorized to provide online learning courses to

eligible students in the State of Georgia. In accordance with O.C.G.A. §20-2-319.1,

priority shall be given to public school students enrolled in Georgia public schools

and services shall be provided to private and home study students through a

procedure established by the State Board of Education and implemented by the

Department.

2. Local school systems and private schools, as a condition for participation in the

Georgia Virtual School shall agree to transcribe and award credit earned by students

completing coursework through the Georgia Virtual School. A record of home study

students’ participation in Georgia Virtual School courses shall be maintained at their

local Educational Technology Center.

3. The Department shall coordinate all Georgia Virtual School activities and

services for private and home study students.

4. The Department shall develop and maintain the necessary guidelines and

protocols for operation of the Georgia Virtual School.

(b) Funding and Tuition.

1. The Department is authorized to establish a Georgia Virtual School grant account

with funds appropriated by the General Assembly. The amount of funds requested by

the State Board for this account shall be based on the following criteria:

(i) For public school students in the amount that the participating students would

have earned if they had been in equivalent FTE general education programs in a local

school system for that portion of the instructional day in which the students were

enrolled in Georgia Virtual School courses.

(ii) For private and home study students an equivalent amount that the participating

students would have generated if they had been in corresponding FTE general

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education programs in a local school system for that portion of the instructional day

in which the students were enrolled in Georgia Virtual School courses.

2. Funds may be appropriated for online learning courses taken by students in

Georgia Virtual School courses who meet the following criteria for course

enrollments during the regular school day:

(i) Public school student who is taking a course(s) as a part of their regular five and

one half hours instructional day or its time equivalent pursuant to State Board of

Education Rule 160-5-1.02 School Day and School Year for Students and Employees.

(ii) Private or home study student who is taking a course(s) as a part of his or her

regular four and one half hours instructional day or its time equivalent pursuant to

O.C.G.A. § 20-2-690.

3. Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 20-2-160(a), no school, program, or local school system

shall receive state funding for class periods in which its students take an online course

through the Georgia Virtual School.

4. Based on appropriations, local school systems shall be reimbursed for a portion

of administrative costs for students enrolled in courses through the Georgia Virtual

School.

5. Local school boards with students enrolled in approved entities online learning

programs for courses during the regular school day shall be funded in the amount that

the participating students would have earned if those students had been in an

equivalent FTE general education programs in a local school for that portion of the

instructional day in which the students were enrolled in an approved entity online

learning course.

6. Tuition shall be collected by the Georgia Virtual School staff for public school,

private school, and home study students:

(i) Who are enrolled outside of the regular school day, as defined by the

Department.

(ii) Who are enrolled in a summer school term as defined in this rule.

(iii) Who are enrolled in local teacher-led virtual courses, as defined in this rule.

(c) Registration.

1. A student shall register for Georgia Virtual School courses through an online

registration system developed in accordance with program guidelines.

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2. Students registered in a Georgia public school, private school or home study

program shall receive written approval from a facilitator prior to being enrolled in a

Georgia Virtual School online learning course.

3. Students enrolled in a Georgia Virtual School online learning course shall be

assigned a Georgia Testing Identifier (GTID) as set forth in State Board of Education

Rule 160-5-1-.07 Student Data Collection.

4. Priority in registration shall be given to public school students.

(d) Personnel.

1. Instructional staff employed or contracted by the Georgia Virtual School shall

meet the requirements for teacher certification as required by the Georgia

Professional Standards Commission. Every Georgia Virtual School teacher is also

required to complete training as outlined in the Georgia Virtual School Teacher

Handbook.

2. As a condition of employment, instructional staff employed by the Georgia

Virtual School shall abide by the responsibilities, guidelines and procedures as set

forth in the Georgia Virtual School Teacher Handbook.

3. As a condition of employment, instructional staff employed by the Georgia

Virtual School shall be evaluated per O.C.G.A. § 20-2-210.

4. Facilitators shall be appointed by local school systems, private school

administrators, or Educational Technology Center Directors and may be full-time,

part-time, contracted, and instructional or support staff. Facilitators shall abide by the

responsibilities, guidelines and procedures as set forth in the Georgia Virtual School

Facilitator Handbook.

(e) Student Expectations.

1. Students must agree to abide by the Georgia Virtual School guidelines,

procedures, and policies as outlined in the Georgia Virtual School Student Handbook.

2. A student enrolled in the Georgia Virtual School and any approved entity shall

earn a final numeric grade at the end of every course attempted unless the student

withdraws from the course according to the guidelines in the Georgia Virtual School

Student Handbook or approved entity handbook. Grades earned, including final

grades, final exams and End of Course Tests shall comply with State Board of

Education Rule 160-4-2-.13 Statewide Passing Score. Local school systems and

private schools that approve student course enrollment(s) shall accurately transcribe a

student’s Georgia Virtual School final grade to the student’s permanent

record/transcript. A home study student shall be provided a certificate of completion

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indicating date, course, and numeric grade from the Georgia Virtual School or an

approved entity.

(f) Instruction Process.

1. The Georgia Virtual School and approved entities shall provide access to

students through a learning management system that adequately teaches and assesses

courses through the online medium.

2. The Georgia Virtual School and approved entities shall provide all instructional

materials necessary for all participating students and teachers, except those in local

teacher-led virtual courses, as defined in this rule. Approved entities or local school

systems with online programs shall provide the instructional materials through their

programs.

3. The Georgia Virtual School and all approved entities shall maintain records of

students’ participation in online learning courses pursuant to applicable records

retention policies.

4. The Georgia Virtual School and approved entities shall authorize the

administration and abide by rules of all tests as required by the Department for

completion of a course(s).

5. The Georgia Virtual School and approved entities shall maintain minimum

accessibility to course content as outlined by the Department.

(g) Curriculum and Course Quality.

1. The Georgia Virtual School and approved entities shall adhere to course and

course numbering as set forth in State Board of Education rule.

(h) Approved Entity Requirements.

1. The Georgia Department of Education shall develop criteria for schools or local

school systems to become a Georgia Virtual School Approved Entity for the purposes

of operating a virtual school program. Approved schools or local school systems

shall abide by the responsibilities, guidelines and procedures as set forth in the

Georgia Virtual School Approved Entities Manual.

Authority O.C.G.A. § 20-2-319.1

Adopted: July 21, 2011 Effective: August 11, 2011

 

Georgia Department Of Education
Adopted Date:  7/21/2011
Effective Date:  8/11/2011

NOTE: The State of Georgia has moved the Georgia Code. This new environment no longer allows us to link directly to the Georgia Code. For example enter 20-02-0211 in the search window and the Georgia Code will appear.
Policy Code Description
IFBGD Distance Learning and Online Courses
Georgia Code Description
O.C.G.A ยง 20-02-0319.1 Georgia Virtual School
These references are not intended to be part of the rule itself, nor do they indicate the basis or authority for the board to enact this rule. Instead, they are provided as additional resources for those interested in the subject matter of the rule.