Washington State Puts Required History Course Online

Washington State students struggling to fulfill the graduation requirement that they be familiar with the history of the state will get a little help starting this week. A course that will honor the requirement is now available online, so kids struggling to balance their schedule will be able to log on and do the course work when it's convenient.

Washington's Red Comet online platform will be hosting the course, titled "Washington State History," and will cover material from the time the state first joined the Union to the present day. Offering the course online will especially help those whose schools are unable to schedule at least one section of the class each semester.

The offering is self-paced and intended to meet a gap in districts unable to offer the course every term, a challenge for students who fall ill or who otherwise miss the normal sequence of course offerings. The class will also be utilized in some cases for credit recovery, according to information released by the company.

The knowledge of state history was made a graduation requirement by the Washington State Board of Education. Each student must possess some understanding not only of how the state came to be and developed over the years, but also of its geographic and geological features, its climate, economy and government. The students also cover topics that range from early settlement to the state's major industry.

Also included is a civics component designed to help students to understand just how government functions, the division of government into local, state, and national components, and how the system of checks and balances helps to make sure the system functions as it ought to. Respect for diversity is also stressed with an emphasis on the unique cultural and ethnic groups that have helped to make the state what is today.

Doctor Jay Srinivasan, the managing director of Red Comet, said that the response to the online version of the course so far has been almost overwhelmingly positive. Feedback from students, as well as teachers and parents, show that they were delighted that a self-scheduling option was available to students rushing to fulfill their requirements and graduate on time.

Red Comet has been providing online content to Washington State's high schoolers since 1999, and is overseen by the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. It is accredited as an education provider by the Northwest Accreditation Commission.

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