Learn4Life offers 10 questions parents need to ask of their school’s independent study program

When done right, independent study means students get one-on-one attention from teachers.

Just like the oxymoron “jumbo shrimp,” independent study is incongruous as a term because when implemented correctly, this style of learning surrounds students with support and resources, rather than leaving them to learn on their own.

Independent study in California is growing in popularity since the pandemic with more than 130,000 students enrolled in this school year. Yet there are no statewide standards established for independent study and many teachers have never taught this way before, so the quality varies widely from school to school. Ideally, independent study should address individual student needs and learning styles, enabling them to complete their academics outside the traditional classroom setting.

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