Advantages of Online Schools Over Campus-Based Education

Schooling is one of the most difficult parts of one's life. Education is one of the essentials and today it has become the priority for everyone at all levels. Going to conventional schools is sometimes a dream for many as they do not have access to any nearby good school which provides the best educational facilities in the particular subject desired by the students. In such cases, online schools are the best opportunity to learn and obtain a degree.

Online schools, unlike the campus schools, provide a wide range of subjects and a completely flexible environment consistent according to the timings of the students. These schools allow students to attend classes anywhere and anytime which suits them. There are no restrictions for participation in a certain manner, or just hearing the teacher. The lectures are complete and coherent which need no further explanations as teachers realize the fact about students that they do not have access to them in person, so it needs to be put-up in the most logical way. Students gain ample time to learn and understand all the concepts. The interactions and discussions forums with fellow students and teachers result in the best learning environment for students.

With increasing technological advances, researches and varying concepts related to science and the arts, it is difficult to keep the curriculum up-to-date in a conventional schooling process. Online schools have this opportunity to keep their curriculum updated as they do not follow any specific set of books and syllabuses which is fixed once and for all. The updated concepts help in improving students' views about different aspects of the subjects and their minor details. This helps in enhancing thinking process along with increasing student's knowledge to let them concentrate on critical and analytical concepts.

Online schools provide a bright opportunity to the students and professionals to gain the best up-to-date knowledge in accordance with the modern tactics and techniques helping them to understand the changing requirements of the industry that they are associated with. The interactive study method helps students improve their mental abilities and knowledge in the relevant industries, thus, making it easier for them to improve their position financially and rankly at the job place.

Students who are working at part-time jobs can actually get some more time to rest and remain fresh to learn and understand the subject of study in a better way as it is not able to manage the campus education and continuing job. Online schools also provide students with the opportunity to customize their timetables according to the times which suits them the best. This allows the students to study in a relaxed way since enabling them to learn and understand in the best way and gain a high level job with the best knowledge at hand. Briefly, while pursuing online education, students do not feel any burdens of studies or managing times, as everything is transported out as per their own requirements and desires. …

California Using Student Loan Defaults to Limit College Grants

The state of California is taking a page from the US Department of Education's playbook. In an effort to trim a near $ 27 billion budget deficit, lawmakers are exploring the possibility of limiting payouts from the state's Cal Grant college student financial aid program based on a school's student loan default rate.

Cal Grants are state-funded grants that provide students with awards from $ 576 to $ 11,124 a year, depending on their degree program, to help pay for college. Under the measure currently being considered by the state legislature, schools which default rate on student loans falls above a certain threshold would be barred from offering Cal Grants to their students. Square in the crosshairs of the legislative move would be for-profit colleges and universities that operate in California, many of which default rates currently exceed the proposed threshold.

Among the affected schools would be five for-profit behemoths: the University of Phoenix; DeVry University; ITT Technical Institute; Kaplan Colleges; and Corinthian Colleges, which operates Everest College, Heald College, and WyoTech.

Combined, those five school networks received more than $ 42 million in grants in the 2009-10 academic year. All five institutions currently have a default rate that exceeds the state's Student Default Rate Index, a new calculation designed to identify institutions which students routinely default on their school loans.

For-profit schools already took a potential hit in February when the California Student Aid Commission voted unanimously to reduce Cal Grant awards to for-profit colleges, should the Cal Grant program be subordinated to budget cuts. The Commission cited for-profit schools' high default rates, poor oversight, and high dropout rates as justification for yanking state funding for Cal Grants at these schools. As part of its proposal, the Commission recommended capping maximum annual Cal Grant awards for students at for-profit institutions.

Currently, students enrolled in a voluntary program at a California community college are eligible for annual Cal Grant awards of $ 576. Students enrolled in a voluntary program at a career training school or other non-community college institution – such as a for-profit school – are eligible to receive up to an additional $ 2,592 a year.

Students enrolled in a two-year or four-year degree program at a private college – which includes for-profit schools – are eligible to receive up to $ 9,708 a year.

The Commission's recommendation would limit Cal Grants for students seeking voluntary certificates or two-year degrees at a for-profit college to the maximum award for first-year students enrolled in degree program of at least one year, currently $ 1,551.

Students pursuing a bachelor's degree at a for-profit institution would be limited to the maximum Cal Grant award available for students pursuing a two-year or four-year degree within the California State University system, currently $ 4,884.

In its recommendations last month, the Commission had also proposed cutting Cal Grant awards at institutions with high student loan default rates – a version of the measure currently being considered by the California legislature. Under the bill in …