International Day of Education gives students, educators opportunity to expand skills

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LANSING, Mich. — Michigan school administrators, educators are encouraged to address issues of equity and inclusion in schools through free programming made possible by a collaboration between Michigan Virtual, Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. 

This week marks the fourth annual “International Day of Education,” celebrated on January 24th annually, to recognize the role of education in peace and development, and to support transformative actions for inclusive, equitable and quality education for all students. The theme for this year’s annual International Day of Learning is “Changing Course, Transforming Education,” which calls for a rebalancing of our relationships with each other, with nature, as well as with technology, bearing opportunities to address concerns of equity and inclusion.

The collaboration between Michigan Virtual, Michigan State University and the University of Michigan has led to the creation of 14 modules, offered for free to Michigan schools, addressing issues of inclusive teaching and learning. These free professional learning modules have been made possible thanks to a $1.4 million investment from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund. These online courses outline current research and best practices for those teaching remotely. 

“These modules offer educators the latest research and best practices for learning about and addressing topics central to the heart of being more inclusive and equitable members of society.”

Jamey Fitzpatrick, President and CEO of Michigan Virtual

“These modules offer educators the latest research and best practices for learning about and addressing topics central to the heart of being more inclusive and equitable members of society,” said Jamey Fitzpatrick, President and CEO of Michigan Virtual. “These free resources can help educators create a safe and comfortable learning environment designed to meet every student’s unique needs and can continue to meet the challenges and opportunities that arise in a COVID-19 classroom.”  

The courses support learning about topics such as social interventions for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), family-school partnerships for students with disabilities, project-based learning, social justice, anti-racism, self-care, online learning for multilingual students, trauma-informed practice in PreK-12 education and more. 

Educators and school administrators are encouraged to review the available resources and enroll at www.michiganvirtual.org/geer-grant. The modules are available at no cost to Michigan schools to work through at their own pace, and State Continuing Education Clock Hours will be awarded upon successful completion of the modules.

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About Michigan Virtual

Michigan Virtual™ (formally known as Michigan Virtual University®) provides online courses for Michigan students, professional development for educators and is the parent organization of the Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute®. As a nonprofit organization with more than 20 years of experience, Michigan Virtual is Michigan’s leading voice in online education. Visit us at michiganvirtual.org.

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Limited Course Capacity

We’re sorry to inform you that we have reached capacity for several of our Semester 1 and Trimester 1 courses. You’ll notice when attempting to enroll students in our Student Learning Portal that some courses are unavailable. While we are no longer accepting new enrollments for these courses at this time, many courses continue to remain open for enrollment.

With many students across the state 100% remote, demand for our online courses is greater than ever before. Because every course we offer is taught by a Michigan-certified teacher, this high volume of enrollments has created capacity issues for our teachers who provide each and every student with individual feedback.

While the Michigan Virtual team anticipated and planned for significant increases in student enrollments this Fall, the increased demand we’ve experienced has been unprecedented. As a result, we are taking steps to hire even more part-and full-time teachers to support larger numbers of student enrollments for Semester 2 as well as for Trimester 2 and 3. 

For schools that still need online learning options this year, please fill out the form at the bottom of our virtual pathways page to meet with someone to discuss other solutions. While some of our teacher-led courses are full, we may still have the capacity to help you in upcoming terms or can discuss timing to implement a whole-school or collaborative program in which local teachers from your school/district use our online course content to teach students. We also have free course content and resources available for you to use.

We know this is an incredibly stressful time for all, and we’re sorry if the courses you’re looking for are unavailable. We never want to turn away a student who wants to learn from us. Our top concern, however, is student success, and we have a policy to not take on additional enrollments if we cannot guarantee that all students will have a quality online learning experience. 

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate the unusually high volume of enrollments we are receiving.