The Southwest Virginia Education and Training Network (SVETN) is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit corporation governed by educators. The SVETN was established in response to a need to increase curriculum offerings in small rural schools throughout southwestern Virginia. Organized originally for the purpose of facilitating instruction by interactive video, within the past decade other distance learning modes have emerged. The SVETN is headquartered in Abingdon at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center and staffed by two full-time and one part-time employee.
In 2004, SVETN launched Elite Learning, a program of asynchronous online courses in its sixteenth year serving the students of southwestern Virginia. Elite is an acronym for Experience Learning Innovation and Teaching Excellence. SVETN serves the educational needs of learners in Bland, Buchanan, Carroll, Dickenson, Grayson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington, Wise, Wythe, and the cities of Norton, Bristol, and Galax.
Most courses offered by Elite Learning are dual enrollment, meaning students receive both high school and college credit for the same coursework. Elite Learning provides SVETN member high schools with a selection of courses taught by college adjuncts who use an Internet based Learning Management System (LMS), called Moodle. Moodle supports a combination of rigorous collaborative and self-paced activities conducted at the learner’s computer.
Classes are asynchronous. That is, students may proceed at their own speed, on their own time within a flexible calendar framework. Thus the scheduling of in-school work time also is conveniently flexible. Any school schedule can be accommodated since Elite Learning classes are offered in both semester and yearlong formats.
Benefits of participation in Elite Learning are tremendous. Most courses offered by Elite Learning are dual-enrollment, meaning students receive both high school and college credit for the same coursework. This also helps students achieve college credit requirements of the Early College Scholar program.
Nineteen fully developed and tested online courses approved for Virginia high school graduation and community college credits will be offered during the 2019-2020 school year.