More Options for Gifted Kids
Somebody must be listening about the lack of schooling options for many gifted kids... Now Stanford University has announced that it will create a full-time online high school as an extension of its EPGY program. You can read about the article here, in the San Jose Mercury News.
Online high schools have gotten a bit of a bad rep in recent years, as a number have sprung up to cater to athletes who need certain grades to play in college. Having the Stanford brand name attached to one will certainly do a lot to make this variety of school seem more legitimate.
There will be some in-person interaction; Stanford recommends that students visit campus in summer to take their lab courses and meet with professors.
Online learning is certainly not for everyone. Kids need to be very motivated (it's easier to get away with zoning out than in a traditional classroom!). Some people find it easier to drop out of courses when they don't have a personal connection to the teacher or the other classmates. I've taken a few online writing classes, and inevitably we lose about half of the students by the end.
On the other hand, many parents of highly gifted kids wind up homeschooling at some point. These parents often complain about the lack of advanced curricula (or secular curricula in general) available for highly gifted homeschooled kids. For these families, Stanford's high school can't start soon enough.