Florida Virtual School launches AI learning pathways for high school students

A new array of Florida Virtual School courses features a mix of core and electives, including career and technical education, Advanced Placement, world languages, math, and science. Artificial Intelligence in the World is one of four new career and technical education classes.

Editor’s note: This news release was provided by Florida Virtual School. To listen to a reimaginED podcast interview with FLVS senior manager for curriculum development Amy Heflin, click here.

As the world races toward an artificial intelligence-driven future, Florida Virtual School unveils one of the first AI programs of study, a progression of industry-focused classes, for high school students. The first course, Artificial Intelligence in the World, is now open for enrollment.

Plus, the school announced nine additional new courses with an emphasis on electives that enable students to discover their passions and interests before heading off to college and/or the workforce.

The AI industry is expected to experience a steady job growth of 37% between 2023 and 2030 and currently, more than 77% of the world’s population uses an AI-powered device or service.

“Our hope is that our AI courses will encourage students to embrace rather than fear AI,” said Amy Heflin, senior manager, curriculum development. “But more importantly, it is imperative that we teach students about how to use AI appropriately and ethically.”

The new Florida Virtual School courses are a mix of core and electives, including Career and Technical Education (CTE), Advanced Placement, world languages, math, and science to give students the time and space they need to explore what interests them and what they want to do after high school.

The courses are tuition-free for Florida high school students and include:

New career and technical education courses:

Artificial Intelligence in the World. This introductory course will guide students through the concepts, tools, and building blocks of artificial intelligence and provide them with a broad overview of how AI is used in decision-making and problem-solving worldwide. They’ll also have the opportunity to explore the various parts of AI with hands-on activities through the use of chatbots and other interactive elements. This is the first course in the new Artificial Intelligence Foundations program of study.

Foundations of Curriculum and Instruction. Students will get a glimpse of the classroom environment and develop their portfolios, participate in field observations, and observe children of various ages to see firsthand how teachers carry out lessons in the classroom. This course is the third and final in the Principles of Teaching program of study and is an honors-level course.

Hospitality & Tourism Marketing Management. Students will learn marketing and management principles and procedures specific to the hospitality and tourism industry in this course. With the sales, marketing, and entrepreneurship skills necessary to succeed in future jobs, they’ll look to future career opportunities and understand the employment qualifications necessary to embrace them. This course is the third and final in the Hospitality & Tourism Program of Study.

Principles of Entrepreneurship. In this course, students will identify characteristics and traits of entrepreneurs and assess personal strengths and weaknesses for entrepreneurial success. It also outlines the steps in starting a business, the role of the economy in small businesses, the basic principles of marketing, selling, distributing, and financing, and the workforce readiness skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur. This is the first course in the new Entrepreneurship program of study.

New core courses:

Astronomy/Solar Galactic. Students will journey through the universe on a stellar exploration through space and time, and discover ancient astronomy and the instruments used to investigate the properties and motion of celestial objects. They’ll also examine planetary conditions in our solar system and beyond, including  experimentation and investigation of the physics of light, the interactions between Earth, sun, and moon in our solar system, the luminosity of stars, and theoretical observations and developments.

Mathematics for College Liberal Arts. Students will explore a range of mathematical concepts and fields, all while connecting ideas to their application in our world. Major topics in this course include linear and exponential functions, geometry in the real world, analysis of data and probability, and the use of functions as models. Logic and theory as they apply to the practical use of mathematical concepts are introduced, giving students an understanding of how the principles of higher-level math connect to everyday life.

Mathematics for Data and Financial Literacy. In this course, students will explore specific math skills to understand how money will impact their life from a personal and a business perspective. They’ll see how properly managing money can lead to financial success and learn how to analyze data to help make decisions.  

New Advanced Placement courses:

AP Computer Science Principles. This college-level course is ideal for incoming ninth graders and sets the foundation for learning concepts and challenges of computer science and its impact on society. Students will stretch their creativity and problem-solving skills to build solutions for the issues they find important. They’ll also learn how to design, develop, and evaluate computer programs using algorithms and the JavaScript programming language, and practice analyzing data and simulations to extract knowledge from information.

AP Physics 1. This algebra-based, introductory physics course will guide students through a college-level learning experience. Students will develop an understanding of physics through rich content, engaging activities, and an inquiry-based laboratory. Additionally, they will explore concepts such as analyzing motion, force interactions, energy, rotational motion, and waves. Students who successfully complete this course will be equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary for their next steps in many medical, environmental, or scientific career paths.

New world languages courses:

French 3 Honors. In the French 3 Honors course, students will sharpen the increased listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills acquired in French 1 and 2. Communication remains the main focus through speaking, listening, writing, and reading. Students will dive a little deeper into the francophone culture and apply what they learn through reading, writing, listening, and speaking activities.

To learn more about FLVS Flex, FLVS Full Time, and other options, visit flvs.net/online-school-options.

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