Students attending the Nevada Connections Academy didn’t board the school bus on the first day or school. Instead, these students logged in. Nevada Connections Academy is a free virtual public school for students K-12 and operates statewide. It is just like a traditional bricks and mortar school– the only difference is that the students attend from home or wherever they are accessing the school via internet.
NCA is a teacher-directed environment with real, live, local, certified teachers putting together lesson plans, delivering instruction and assigning grades. The school uses the highest quality curriculum and students receive real textbooks, a loaned computer and all of their other learning materials (science kits, manipulatives, PE equipment such as jump ropes) at no cost.
Michele Voelkening at Purdue Marion has had the pleasure of working with Nevada Connections Academy since it first came to Nevada five years ago. Since then she has also started working with its school in Texas. Education has always been very important to Michele. She finds it especially gratifying to raise awareness about the schools so they can provide even more students with a high-quality education.
This is very different that home schooling. Rather, this is a home-based learning environment. At Nevada Connections Academy, parents are not asked to play the role of the teacher. Instead, they are learning coaches.
Each student is given his/her own learning plan. Students are evaluated and given a learning plan that is tailored specifically to them and their strengths and weaknesses.
Students participate in clubs, write for the student newspaper, go on field trips just at they would in a traditional setting. Since it is a public school, the same requirements exist as far as shot records, vacation days and the students receive a diploma upon graduation. And colleges are receptive to the graduates. Connections Academy graduates have been accepted to many of the nation’s leading colleges and universities.
Virtual education continues to be one of the fastest growing trends in education. There are many reasons why more students are choosing an online learning environment for their education. For some students they need a flexible schedule because they are actors or athletes who have to travel quite a bit. Some of the parents have jobs that require a great deal of travel. Some students have physical disabilities that make it difficult to sit in a classroom for eight hours a day. Some families are just looking for a different option.
To learn more about NCA, visit http://www.connectionsacademy.com/nevada-school/home.aspx .