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Marlborough School Student Newspaper
The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

School joins online class consortium

Students can pay $650 to $1,300 to take courses including AP government, AP statistics and graphic art through the Online School for Girls next year.

The school, known as OSG, is the effort of a consortium of ten top all-girls schools across the country. Marlborough announced it joined the consortium May 7.

Director of Upper School Laura Hotchkiss said Marlborough’s participation will let students take courses that aren’t offered on campus. She said the school also wants to see what new courses students decide to take online and whether any of those should be offered on campus.

Some courses offered by OSG, such as AP statistics, are already offered at Marlborough. Hotchkiss said students won’t be restricted from taking those courses, but that enrollment in the online courses is capped at a total of just 20 students from all the member schools.

OSG is not yet accredited, so its courses won’t meet University of California or Marlborough graduation requirements in 2010-11. Also, the courses won’t be included on student transcripts or in their GPAs next year.

When OSG achieves accreditation, which it hopes to complete for 2011-12, courses will count for UC and graduation requirements. However, Hotchkiss said the school still will have to evaluate the rigor of the classes before it decides to include them in transcripts and GPAs. Hotchkiss said the online courses have been designed to require at least ten hours of work a week, including online class time and homework.

Tuition is $650 for semester courses and $1,300 for full-year courses, and students get a 10 percent discount because of Marlborough’s consortium membership. Hotchkiss said that how the classes will ultimately fit into the Marlborough tuition is still under consideration. For now, costs won’t be included in annual tuition and financial aid won’t be offered for them. Alice ’11, who wants to take AP computer science, said cost could be a deterrent.

“It costs extra money, which my parents aren’t too happy about since they’re already paying for tuition,” Alice said.

However, Alice, who wants to study engineering, said she still might enroll. Others, such as Aubrey ’11, who is interested in majoring in political science in college, said the courses she wants to take, AP psychology and AP U.S. government, are worth the cost.

“I’ll probably take it anyway because of how much the course will benefit me,” she said.

Hotchkiss said the classes give students a chance to show colleges their interest in a particular subject beyond what is offered on campus.

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