Recently, we at the Swiss Online School conducted a survey among parents. The way of learning is exactly the same as at American Online School, so we don’t want to withhold the results because they represent objective opinions of parents.
Reasons for enrolling in the Swiss Online School
The reasons vary, but frequently mentioned are the opportunities to rediscover or maintain the joy of learning. Many children no longer feel comfortable in public schools due to sensory overload, pressure, or long hours of attendance. The Swiss Online School provides parents with guidance and support for homeschooling, and the structure is appreciated. Further reasons include students studying abroad and chronic illnesses that make regular school attendance impossible or challenging.
Working time and self-motivation
60% of respondents spend a daily average of between 3 and 4 hours doing Swiss Online School coursework. 86% feel that this is a sufficient amount of time, and 83% of respondents believe that despite the flexibility of the Swiss Online School, children have a structured daily routine. 88% observe that their child has thrived since joining the Swiss Online School, and that their self-motivation has increased significantly (80%).
Evaluation of instruction
88% of respondents state that their child works on tasks with concentration or rather concentrated. None of them selected the option “not at all” [concentrated]. 12% chose the option “rather not”[concentrated]. 87% confirm that their child understands the tasks given to them (the survey also included parents of 1st to 3rd graders). A staggering 93% know what task they need to complete, and 78% of the children can solve them independently. 22% selected “rather not” [independently]. No one chose the option “not at all” [independently]. 93% of children enjoy homeschooling. The feedback from the teachers helps the children progress (89%) and is motivating (98%!). Areas for improvement include the regularity and speed of feedback and support. With 72% and 73% agreement, respectively, there is still room for improvement. We have already taken action by implementing the daily online classroom, which provides an opportunity for students to directly ask questions to the teacher through a daily Teams meeting. Additionally, we will reorganize our approach to providing timely corrections and feedback.
The flexibility, independent learning, and organization of the material and learning units are particularly appreciated. The evaluations from the instructors are written in a very personal and encouraging manner, which motivates the children to make improvements (although it does make us a bit slow :-)). One aspect that is sometimes seen as both, positive and negative, is that often the next task can only be started once the previous one is completed, and frequently, worksheets need to be filled out by hand (especially in primary school).
Many survey takers provide detailed accounts of how their child has developed further, becoming more balanced, happier, motivated, and relaxed, and rediscovering the joy of learning. The self-esteem of many students has been boosted, often due to the appreciative and motivating feedback from the teachers. In some cases, the health condition of a few children has improved. In addition to academic skills, digital competencies are also fostered, and parents highly appreciate their children acquiring knowledge and skills that can be applied in everyday life.
A few quotes to conclude:
“We were looking for an educational system that is child-friendly, brings progress for every child, and allows the joy of learning to flourish again!!! And this is definitely the case here!!! Our child confirms this every day! We can only recommend it!”
“The freedom to schedule when I work on which subject is brilliant. The grading system for each performance is very fair; it is evaluated based on the entire work.”
“The courses are well-structured, and the content follows Lehrplan21 (the curriculum framework in Switzerland). The platform is well-designed and stable.”
“The overview of completed and pending tasks.”
“The content/idea of the tasks – motivating teacher feedback.”
“The structure and topics are well-chosen and explained in a child-friendly manner.”
“The instructional material in all subjects is very engaging and interesting, encouraging critical thinking and application. The feedback on completed tasks is very positive and motivating.”
“The structure of the learning units is well-designed. We appreciate the variety between educational videos, texts, and worksheets.”
Quotes on the child’s development:
“Our child has positively developed on all levels since joining the Swiss Online School. Our kid looks forward to the lessons and approaches the exciting tasks with great interest and enthusiasm. Once, after reading the task, my kid said said, ‘Ha! This way, it’s even more fun for children to practice, although I would have enjoyed it anyway! My previous teacher would have never thought of something like this!’ (It was about using a dictionary in German.)”
“Our daughter has blossomed and regained her self-confidence.”
“He has learned to read and follow instructions to complete tasks. He enjoys working on the computer, and the feedback is positive. He is doing very well at the Swiss Online School.”
“Our daughter has become much more independent in the past school year. She has shed a significant part of her minimalist thinking and working style, and she has developed a healthy ambition.”
“Very positive, more reflective, satisfied, independent, learns more for herself.”
“She has learned to organize herself and her materials. She has found her own rhythm.”