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8 Most Common Questions Parents Ask Teachers About Virtual School
Though virtual schooling has already been widely accepted, it is still a new concept, at least for the parents. They have several questions on their minds when it comes to enrolling their children to an online high school. After all, considering something new for your child can be pretty taxing and contemplative.
Here is a list of the top 8 common questions that parents ask teachers about virtual high schools along with their consecutive answers:
IS THE ENTIRE SCHOOLWORK CONDUCTED ONLINE?
In most of the genuine accredited online high schools, the amount of schoolwork completed online highly depends on the student’s level of grade. Elementary as well as middle-school students might find it extremely challenging if the entire course goes virtual. This is kept in mind while designing curriculums for elementary and middle school students. In case of elementary school students, the work is mostly completed offline. At the same time, they are given opportunities to use manipulative and to do other hands-on activities. In case of Middle school students, the work is usually completed by the proper blending of on- and offline work. This is because the middle-school students need to emerge as more independent individuals before starting with their high-school phase. In case of High school students, the entire course is online since they are expected to be independent learners.
IS THE CURRICULUM BASED ON THE COMMON CORE–STATE STANDARDS?
The online school curriculum usually includes language arts/English, math, science, and social studies courses for each grade. As per the state-specific requirements, the curriculum is adjusted. In case your state has adopted the Common Core State Standards, the curriculum is adjusted based on these set standards.
ARE THE TEACHERS ACCESSIBLE EASILY TEACHERS FOR STUDENTS WHO MAY NEED EXTRA HELP?
Genuine online schools provide full-time faculty support for their students. Online teachers are usually dedicated towards helping out the students based on one-on-one approach. It is likely for students to come up with several queries. The online teachers are available 24X7 and can afford to resolve the issues faced the students, both academic and non-academic ones. Teachers might conduct an assessment to evaluate strengths and weaknesses. When they get familiar to a student’s learning style, they are able to guide him or her easily. The teachers focus on every student to identify gaps in his or her skills and level of knowledge and help them improve. One of the best things is that teachers can personalize the lesson to fit each student.
Online teachers usually make it a point to communicate well with the students through Webmail, phone calls, real-time online sessions and other available platforms. They mainly focus on working one-on-one with the student in case he or she requests help on a specific topic or subject. They also facilitate students by providing additional resources and giving genuine feedbacks instantly based on their performance.
ARE THE CREDITS FROM THE STUDENT’S CURRENT SCHOOL TRANSFERRABLE TO AN ONLINE SCHOOL?
Usually, the academic placement team works with the parents during the enrollment or transition process to evaluate your student’s previous schooling status. They make sure to determine appropriate grade level and courses as per his or her needs. The high school students generally work with school counselors during the school year to make sure that they graduate on schedule.
Starting on time at the beginning of a new school year or semester is considered to be ideal because it heightens the chances for the students to succeed in the true sense. However, many online schools accept midyear enrollees though catching up on missed schoolwork can be pretty challenging. You should make sure to check with the school that you’re looking into for specific cutoff dates!
IN A VIRTUAL SCHOOL, IS MORE TIME TAKEN TO LEARN THE CURRICULUM THAN IN TRADITIONAL SCHOOLS?
The online school students can avail a high level of flexibility to work at a self-generated pace. This pace is one that suits their needs, learning pattern, objectives and learning style. They need to stay ahead of the schedule in order to complete their course assignments by the end of the year. However, they can take extra time to learn a specific concept or research more on a topic to expand their knowledge. However, if the student is a quick learner, he or she can go at a faster speed to cover up his course and even graduate early! It is completely up to the student. Also, the teachers have the opportunity to take more time to explain the course material in more details, if required by the students.
CAN A STUDENT GO AT A FASTER PACE IF HE OR SHE IS ACADEMICALLY-ADVANCED?
A well-reputed online school such as the Forest Trail Academy offers multiple opportunities for qualified students to accelerate learning. These opportunities include Advanced Placement and Adaptive/Prescriptive courses etc. These courses usually are designed in a way to provide advanced learners with the right proportion of challenges, complexity, and practicality to develop their academic strengths and unique skills at a whole new level. These specialized courses make sure that they become their best versions.
When the student is making breakthrough progress and performing extremely well consistently, the teacher and the school authority might decide to provide him or her with additional opportunities that would accelerate his learning.
CAN THE STUDENT SOCIALIZE AT ALL WHEN HE IS TAKING ONLINE CLASSES?
The answer is a Yes. A good online high school usually provides the students with a lot of opportunities to socialize. The online curriculum usually includes a lot of fun-filled interactive activities to help the student interact and bond with his or her online peers as well as teachers. Students can form small study-groups to exchange healthy ideas and solve queries together. Also, they can arrange real-time events like field trips to socialize further.
DO THE STUDENTS NEED TO BE TECHNICALLY-STRONG IN ORDER TO AVAIL ONLINE COURSES?
It does not require the student to be tech-savvy right from the beginning. The online courses provide a lot of online tools and resources to help and guide the student academically. So, he shall be needed to do hands-on practice to know the utility of each tool and resource. In this process of knowing more about the tools, the student automatically becomes tech-savvy. He or she even learns the technical shortcuts soon.