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Distance learning

Question:
What percentage of elementary and secondary schools offer distance education?

Response:

During the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020, seventy-seven percent of public schools reported moving classes to online distance-learning formats. Distance learning could include self-paced or real-time learning. Private schools reported using this option at a lower rate (73 percent). A higher percentage of private schools reported moving classes to a distance-learning format using paper materials sent home with students (48 percent) than public schools (41 percent) (tables A-1 and A-2).

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (2022). Impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic on Public and Private Elementary and Secondary Education in the United States (Preliminary Data): Results from the 2020-21 National Teacher and Principal Survey (NTPS).

During the 2017–18 school year, about 21 percent of public schools and 13 percent of private schools offered any courses entirely online. Among public schools, a higher percentage of charter schools (30 percent) offered any courses entirely online, compared to traditional public schools (20 percent).

Percentage of schools that offered any courses entirely online: 2017–18
School type and selected school characteristic Percent of schools that offered any courses entirely online
All public schools 21.0
School classification
Traditional public 20.2
Charter school 30.3
School level
Primary 2.7
Middle 12.7
High 58.9
Combined 61.3
Student enrollment
Less than 100 41.9
100-199 29.8
200-499 15.2
500-749 12.5
750-999 19.4
1,000 or more 45.8

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (2019). Characteristics of Public and Private Elementary and Secondary Schools in the United States: Results From the 201718 National Teacher and Principal Survey First Look, Table 3.

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