Principal Investigators of the Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities wrote this letter to express some concerns about the present participation of students with disabilities in online learning. They are beginning an investigation about the concerns that are outlined in this letter. Here is just a excerpt from this letter that outlined these concerns in nine broad areas.
"Several months ago we accepted the challenge of finding answers to important research questions about how online learning environments can be optimally designed and implemented to be accessible, engaging, and effective for all students, including students with disabilities. To accomplish this goal, the Center is conducting research to identify and verify trends and issues as well as describe potential positive outcomes and negative consequences related to participation of students with disabilities in online learning.'
While careful research ahead will be necessary to investigate these concerns, we think the entire educational community, from producers to consumers, should be aware of the issues that have come to our attention:
2. Inconsistent Policies
3. Accessibility and Universal Design
4. Teacher Training
5. Monitoring and Accountability
6. Reasons for Placement
7. Social and Emotional Supports
8. Lack of Guidance