The Bay Area BlendEd Consortium was founded in 2013 by The Athenian School, The College Preparatory School, Lick-Wilmerding High School, Marin Academy, and The Urban School in order to jointly offer a set of blended classes combining face-to-face and online instruction.
Our membership expanded to include The Branson School in 2019-2020 and then the San Francisco University High School in the 2020-2021 (Cycle 7) school year – 7 school partners for our 7th year of BlendEd! Together, we are committed to making the most of online learning, remarkable teacher-student connections, and Bay Area resources.
As the ways we teach and learn continue to be influenced by the use of digital technology, The BlendEd Consortium combines demonstrated best practices for online learning with our schools’ proven strengths in direct classroom instruction and experiential learning. By creating a blended model, where students access the curriculum and teachers online as well as through regular face-to-face meetings, we help our students prepare for the changing methods of instruction and communication they will see in college and in the workforce while preserving the core relational culture that lies at the heart of our schools’ educational missions.
We are excited to pool the considerable talents that exist in each of our schools for the benefit of student learning. Through our careful work to develop a program that allows students to reach beyond the confines of our schools while benefiting from their strengths, we model both the collaborative spirit that is our hallmark and the creative and innovative thinking that this century demands.
Enrolling in BlendEd Courses
The BlendEd courses are available to juniors and seniors in the seven consortium schools. The courses and full descriptions will be listed in the course catalog at each school and available for eligible students during the course selection process at each consortium school. Class sizes will be limited to 18 students. The small class size affirms our commitment to meeting individual student needs and the building of strong classroom cultures where students feel equally invested in helping each other succeed. Interested students are encouraged to inquire early.
BlendEd Course Structure
BlendEd courses combine demonstrated best practices for online learning with face-to-face instruction, while taking advantage of the geography, talent, and culture of the Bay Area. The instructors of these courses are gifted and committed faculty from the seven BlendEd Consortium schools. Students will access these courses via a learning management system (LMS), where they can engage in a variety of ways, including reviewing materials, exploring digital media, participating in group discussions, and submitting their work. These courses are interactive with significant time spent working asynchronously in the LMS along with occasional virtual class meetings. Each course will also include a minimum of three face-to-face sessions. Students must have reliable access to the Internet and access to a device such as a desktop computer, laptop computer, or tablet.
BlendEd Contacts (Site Coordinators) at Each School:
Bobby Bardenhagen, The Athenian School
Don Rizzi, Lick-Wilmerding High School
Noah Orgish, Marin Academy
Nicole Hunter, SF University
Bethany Hellerich, The Urban School
For more information and detailed course descriptions, please visit us on the web at www.blendedconsortium.org.
- Why participate in a BlendEd class?
- How are the classes structured?
- Are there dedicated quiet spaces at MA to work?
- What are the technological requirements for participation in a BlendEd class?
- Who can enroll and is there specific criteria that will be used to determine which students may register for a BlendEd class?
- Can I take a BlendEd course as an 8th class?
- Is there additional tuition required for taking a BlendEd course?
- How will student performance be assessed and evaluated in a BlendEd course, especially if it’s a nonMA teacher? Is there a midterm evaluation?
- Is the course schedule the same as MA’s regular academic schedule?
- Will my child be able to participate in athletics, theater, music or other after school activities if s/he takes a BlendEd course?
- Are parents able to communicate with a BlendEd teacher from another school?
- How do colleges view a BlendEd course?
- Are these classes UC approved?
- We chose MA because it’s MA, but BlendEd isn’t only MA. Why would my student want to participate in this new endeavor?
- Where can I get more information?
Great question! The BlendEd Consortium is a partnership between seven Bay Area independent schools that allows us to offer our students cool, unique, and innovative electives—courses designed to enhance online learning with face-to-face time, lots of experiential learning, and going on some awesome field trips. BlendEd courses get our students outside their classrooms and engaging with the many natural and cultural resources around the Bay Area, and beyond (via Expeditionary courses)!