Dr. Paula Watkins Looks To Impact Education Through Virtual Institution

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Photo: Clear Clinic

The modern-day progressive movement is about making a positive change to better the world based off of what one believes is ethical. Today, we’re seeing progress in school systems with more technologically advanced approaches to better academic performance in classrooms.

Dr. Paula Watkins has set the bar for this type of action, while taking the title as the first African American woman and founder of a Virtual Education Institution in the United States.

 With more than 30 years of working towards making improvements in academic achievement in core subjects in schools in Michigan, Dr. Watkins has reconstructed and reformed the school system by making changes to every area of the school, from updating the curriculum to correcting issues with administration and testing. Watkins pinpointed all the problem areas that weren’t contributing towards students’ success and growth, and reset the entire schooling system.

Years later, after this work had been done, Dr. Paula Watkins learned that the stage of Michigan decided to expand their charter school legislation in order to develop a virtual education system for learning. She then took the opportunity to step in and be part of this legislation. Her years of previous work was enough for her to bring what she had to the table to successfully create a modern-day virtual school system.

Today, virtual schooling is an option for students. It’s similar to online classes that college student take for credits, except now, this schooling is available for grades K-12. According to the National Education Policy Center, in 2011 there were roughly 320 virtual schools in the United States, and enrollment in these online charter schools have been spiraling.

Watkins has shared, “Our goals are to improve the graduation rates of urban, suburban and rural children and we have recognized that in order for us to improve these statistics educators have to look at intervention strategies. The Cyber Education Center provides an option for students. We are graduating students.”

 To learn more about the Cyber Education Center, visit


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