There might be a handful of reasons why you might be skeptical of a virtual school for your child.However, on the contrary it has been seen that a virtual high school is a pretty good idea after all.
Here are some very common myths related to a virtual high school and which need to be debunked:
· Online schools are easier than traditional schooling
Most of the instructors come up with highly-engaging ways to present the study material. Thus, it gets easier for students to hone their learning skills, gaining considerable self-discipline in course of time.This certainly does not imply that an online course is easier! It is just that online students get the chance and drive to channelize their focus entirely on their studies. Thus, online schooling is no easy on its own. It gets easy when you are diligent and serious enough!
· Online courses are not accredited
Many parents have a misconception that online courses are anything but accredited! This is simply untrue. Just like traditional schools, there are some online schools too that are not accredited. Online high school courses need to meet the same high standards as on-ground courses in order to be certified. Almost all of the topmost online high schools are nationally and regionally accredited. You just need to be cautious at the time of making the selection for your online school.
· A high school diploma is seldom recognized by colleges and employers
Many think that a high school diploma is never accepted by the top universities and employers. This is false. When an online diploma is accredited, it is always well-regarded. There might be some employers who need to be educated about online schools. However, there are many who instantly recognize that the skills students gain through virtual learning, such as time-management, are top-level in the workplace. In fact, in today’s times, an online degree can give you an edge. Almost all the colleges accept diplomas from accredited online high schools.
· Online schools make children socially awkward
Well, this is nothing but a myth! Students get to talk to their online teachers via email, Skype, or chat. Most of the virtual high school courses include group projects. It works wonders for all the shy introverts. These are the ones who feel shy about speaking up in a traditional classroom setting. They may have an easier time participating in online discussions.
Most of the accredited online schools make sure to provide a strong sense of community through active online community. They incorporate extracurricular activities that are fun yet educative.
In a genuine online school, students regularly socialize and interact with peers. The patterns of socialization for virtual learners are not so different from those students in a traditional school. Virtual students even are given the chance to go on field trips, and also socialize with adults in their schools, at home, and in the community.
The flexibility allowed by the virtual schools allows students to socialize outside. They actually get a good deal of free time to do so. After all, most of the online students get to finish their online work fast when compared to the traditional schools.
· Online students spend all of their time in front of a computer
In case of any online school, the computer is a tool for teachers and parents. It is required to manage and track assignments, communicate, and deliver interactive curricular materials. However, it is a fact that students complete many assignments offline. They often spend time reading textbooks, using workbooks, reading library books, and doing hands-on science experiments in their down time period. This is just like they would in a traditional school.
· Cheating is likely to occur at a Virtual High School
It is a fact that cheating can happen anywhere. However, certified teachers know how to keep two steps ahead of students who try to violate the honor system. This includes software programs that help recognize plagiarism.
· Online learning is not led by teachers
The accredited online high school courses are usually led by certified teachers.In fact, parental involvement is not even required in most of the cases. Thus, online teachers are heavily involved in online courses.
However, many report that they know their students better online than in a traditional classroom setting. Accredited online schools make sure to employ highly-qualified teachers. They are provided with special training as to how to deal with handling of a virtual classroom. They are trained to pay special heed to tailoring instruction to match students’ needs and learning styles.
In case of home-based virtual learning, students are mostly under the guidance of a certified teacher. A parent or other trusted adult has the opportunity to serve as a Learning Coach as well. They might decide to assist the child with day-to-day learning activities as needed.
Many online schools strive to provide a peaceful and nurturing environment where the teacher works directly with both the student and Learning Coach to develop an individual learning plan for the child.
· An online student needs to be technically efficient
Well, it is true that an online student needs to be aware of the various online tools and resources in order to gain knowledge and work smoothly on their courses. But, just knowing the basics is all it needs. And the child need not be a pro right from the day one. Online schooling gives a good deal of time to every student to cope up and then take up speed.
Most importantly, most of the reputable virtual schools also take the curriculum and instruction very seriously for students, apart from the technology!
At the time of choosing a virtual school, look for a virtual school with a track record of delivering student academic achievement and high levels of parent and student satisfaction. Of course look for the accreditation from AdvancED, the faculty background, state-of-the-art technology resources and community activities, extracurricular activities, curriculum designs, customizability etc.