As Thanksgiving approaches, we’re looking back at 2014 to give thanks for all of the hard work that has led to the expansion of online and blended learning programs and to the success of students enrolled in these ground-breaking programs.
Following are 5 success stories we are thankful for this holiday season:
1. Colorado- Poudre School District’s Global Academy:
Our first success story is at PSD-Global Academy in Fort Collins, Colorado. Here Global Academy was ranked among the top schools in Colorado for student growth across all grades for the 2013-2014 school year. The Academy has 200 students who attend a full time hybrid program where they attend blended classes on campus and online classes at home.
When we spoke to Principal Heather Hiebsch about her school’s success she said, “I appreciate how ‘curriculum’ now includes opportunities to be flexible and innovative.”
2. Georgia- More than Peaches:
Then, there’s Montgomery Academy.
Here, Randy Rogers, superintendent of the Montgomery County School System, couldn’t hide his enthusiasm for his students when talking to us. Many of his students have life passions that they can pursue due to attending Montgomery Academy.
The type of flexibility that personalized and blended learning provide makes it possible for these students to live up to their individual talents and pursue their dreams while congruently attending school.
3. Florida- The Miami-Dade Online Academy:
Next, we take you to Florida to visit the Cruz-Salcedo Family where 11th grader Sergio Cruz has experienced great success. Sergio’s mother enrolled him in The Miami-Dade Online Academy to help him balance his time between schoolwork and treatments for a serious medical condition.
Now, his mother reports that Sergio has an “overall improvement in self-esteem” due to his personalized learning experience with the Academy. The Cruz-Salcedo family brings to the forefront the importance of a personalized learning option for students suffering from serious illness.
4. Mississippi- Choctaw Central High School:
From there, we journey to Choctaw Central High School on the Choctaw Indian Reservation in Mississippi. Here the greatest challenge for students is language proficiency. Principal Frederick Hickmon sought out a blended learning model to enable his students every academic advantage. Principal Hickmon and his staff utilize credit recovery courses and The Accelerated Reader program for student success.
Mr. Hickmon shared a particularly poignant success story with us about a second year senior who was able to get back on track with credit recovery courses.
5. Pennsylvania- Brandywine Heights Virtual Academy:
At this last stop on memory lane, we go to Pennsylvania to visit Berks County, where Carolyn Hanych-Fitch, director of the Brandywine Heights Virtual Academy, talked to us about how the academy started and what some of their learning goals are for students.
When asked about how Brandywine Heights Virtual Academy began, Director Hanych-Fitch said, “Our main goal was to ensure that we were meeting more students’ needs more effectively. We became part of a consortium of districts that were entering the arena of online and personalized learning.”
We also asked Hanych-Fitch about how she measures success and quality. She went on to explain that “success can only be defined by whether or not our students are meeting their educational goals.”
Want to give thanks for students meeting their goals through personalized online and blended learning? Click here to found out more about FuelEd’s online courses and programs.