Year-end grades show improvement.
All is well that ends well, especially in the case of Molokai High students enrolled in online classes. Although poor first semester grades in Molokai High School’s (MHS) online courses prompted school officials to further examine the e-school program, second semester grades revealed significant improvement among students.
“The students saw the failing grades [from semester one] and got more in gear,” said Mahina Hou, MHS Hawaiian Immersion program instructor. “They got more of an understanding and better support.”
In spring semester 2010, 75 percent of e-school students passed – a significant improvement from the 55 percent who passed the semester prior. Seventy-nine percent of those students passed in world language online courses, and 95 percent passed in their Hawaiian Immersion online English class, according to MHS Acting Principal Denise Kelly.
Hou said all but one of the Hawaiian Immersion e-school students passed their e-school classes for the year. He also mentioned that while the online classes were difficult to get used to, they are the same types of classes that many of his students will be taking in college.
E-school is an alternative online learning program that gives students the option to earn class credit through the Internet. Online classes offered include world languages (French, Japanese and Spanish), advanced placement world history and English. MHS has been using this supplemental system for more than five years – the Hawaiian Immersion program for only one year – and success has been similar to first semester percentages, Kelly said.
Like Kelly, Hou agrees that students were not sure what to expect with this unique style of learning – a likely cause of the students’ poor results for first semester grades.
“With technology, students enjoy the computer and have other things to do on it – iTunes, Photo Booth – so we have to keep on top of them,” Hou said.
Kelly said by increasing teacher and staff involvement, and beefing up communication between MHS and the e-schools, she hopes to see even more progress next school year.
“We have the right supports in place,” Kelly said. “Communication is our focus.”