Early online education receives support from big-name California school

Recent reports indicate that many academics are beginning to consider online educational offerings to be just as effective as face-to-face learning. But, while online offerings still have a few detractors, this November, one prestigious institution made a move that lent validity to the idea that online high schools could soon offer the nation's youngsters a quality alternative education.

On November 19, The New York Times reported that the upcoming graduating class of a high school known as the Education Program for Gifted Youth will have Stanford University name-checked on their diplomas.

While the experimental high school program dates back to 2006, when Stanford started the initiative through a grant by the Malone Family Foundation, members of the class of 2011 will be the first to have their diplomas include a reference to Stanford, according to the news source.

"This is significant," Bill Tucker, managing director of Education Sector, a nonpartisan policy institute, told the media outlet. "One of our country's most prestigious universities feels comfortable putting its considerable prestige and brand behind it."

While online high schools may offer a glimpse into the future of education, for now, individuals looking to enter a new high earning field or upgrade their resumes for an internal or external promotion can turn to online classes. For example, those looking for computer training may be best served by enrolling in programs that can help them pursue an applicable Microsoft certification with the help of a Microsoft certified instructor.

Microsoft SharePoint 2010 certificate, for example, can be a valuable addition that allows job applicants to tout their ability to assess crucial business intelligence via the software. With a growing number of job applicants entering the IT field, extra certifications such as this can help current professionals stay ahead of younger job searchers.

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