Blogs

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Newark Prep Charter School Celebrates First Graduating Class

K12 Executive Chairman Nate Davis shares commencement remarks to the excited graduates. Photo courtesy of Chris Alvarez

Donned in red and white, graduates turned their tassels at Newark Prep Charter School’s first-ever graduation ceremony on Wednesday, June 22nd. Of the 103 graduates, 96 completed their entire high school journey at Newark Prep, which opened four years ago.

K12 Executive Chairman Nate Davis shared commencement remarks, leveraging inspiring personal anecdotes to remind the Class of 2016 about the advantage they have being educating within a blended learning environment.

“You have skills many others don’t have – using technology to help you learn. You know how to do independent study. You are well-prepared for what employers and colleges look for.”

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16-Year-Old AZVA Salutatorian Succeeds with Flying Colors

AZVA salutatorian shows off her ballet skills. Photo courtesy of Ed Flores.

All eyes were on Arizona Virtual Academy (AZVA) student Violet Rose Arma as she led the Pledge of Allegiance at graduation. Now, this talented 16-year-old salutatorian is attending two summer programs with the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre before she heads to college in the fall. These programs include a two week Company Experience intensive, followed by a five week intensive, which began June 20th

Violet, who has chosen to continue her online education by simultaneously dancing in the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s graduate program and completing classes online at Arizona State University (ASU), attributes much of her academic and dancing success to those at AZVA who helped her along the way.

“I felt a great sense of togetherness with each person at graduation,” Violet said. “It is incredible how many lives go into just one person’s education! At AZVA, the involvement of family and outside support is instrumental in student success, along with the learning coaches and online teachers.”

Ana Berry's picture

LAVCA by the Numbers

Everyone relies on numbers.  Numbers matter.  We hear reports about records being set at the voting booth or at a sporting event.  A student’s score on the ACT or a grade in a course could make the difference between getting a college scholarship or not.  Numbers are everywhere.  We recently wrapped up our 5th year at the Louisiana Virtual Charter Academy and have a great deal of numbers to share. 

After 180 school days, LAVCA ended its year with the graduation of 65 seniors.   Among those seniors were students who earned 15 scholarships. LAVCA also graduated 73 kindergarteners, 85% of which plan to continue schooling with us.

K12 Inc.'s picture

Michigan Virtual Charter Academy's Eighth Grade Novelist

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Ganna and her second book, Scribblers

Right now, most eighth grade students are gearing up for high school. Not publishing their second novel.  

But Michigan Virtual Charter Academy’s Ganna Omar isn’t your typical eighth grade student.  

 

“I started getting serious about writing when I was eleven years old, but I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was nine.”  Now thirteen, her second book, entitled ‘Scribbles’, was released in April 2016 via CreateSpace publishing, and is available through Amazon.  

 

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MGLVA Grad Pursues her Passion for Politics

MGLVA Salutatorian Avalon McKinney delivers her graduation address 

The school year has come to a close but Michigan Great Lakes Virtual Academy (MGLVA) Salutatorian Avalon McKinney has embarked on an exciting new challenge. Avalon is running to be a precinct delegate for the Wayne County Republican Party in Livonia, Michigan. The primary will be held on August 2nd.

Avalon became interested in politics two years ago and MGLVA nurtured her desire to learn more. 

“The teachers appreciated everyone’s opinion. We weren’t restricted in saying how we felt politically or religiously,” Avalon said. “This made me more interested in the topics that came up during our studies and pushed me to want to learn more.”

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GCA Rising Star to Sing National Anthem at Major League Baseball Game

Chloe performs in “Crazy for You”, a Gershwin musical. Photo courtesy of  the Orbit Arts Academy

An entire stadium of energized baseball fans will be abuzz as Georgia Cyber Academy 11th grader Chloe McSwain performs the National Anthem at an Atlanta Braves game on July 15th! Chloe is well-prepared, as she sang a gorgeous rendition of the song at last month’s graduation.

“GCA’s graduation was the first time Chloe actually sang the National Anthem for a large crowd and it was extremely well-received,” said her mother, Tiffany McSwain. “Chloe also got to meet GCA’s Head of School, Matt Arkin, and the Lt. Governor of Georgia, Casey Cagle, who delivered commencement remarks.”

Chloe knew back in the third grade that a traditional brick and mortar school wasn’t the right fit. She and Tiffany agreed Chloe needed an alternative option so she could focus on academics while still being able to pursue her performing arts passion.  Chloe began school with GCA in the 4th grade.

In order to reach her goal of being admitted into a performing arts academy following high school, Chloe must be accepted both academically and musically. For this reason, Chloe must be accomplished in both academics and art. She needs to strike a careful balance between both. This makes online schooling an outstanding option.

K12 Inc.'s picture

K12 Inc. Responds to Report on Virtual Charter Schools

As a leading provider to online schools, K12 Inc. has collaborated with educators, policymakers, and organizations on best practices and policies for online and blended public schools.  We strongly advocate for all charter school models. We have supported student-centered policy proposals for all schools, competency-based learning, and better metrics to improve accountability.

The report by NACSA, NAPCS, and 50CAN is not collaborative.  Very few, if any, charter school boards, educators, operators, parents or teachers in online charter schools were part of this report. 

The report relies almost exclusively on a three-part study on online charter schools published last year.  K12 responded to the study and provided a detailed analysis. We disagreed with the study’s reliance on old academic data and the methodology which did not control or account for several key factors unique to typical full-time online schools, including:  persistence and performance over time, date of enrollment, the effect of mobility, and the reasons why children leave their local school. 

Data in the report are old (prior to 2012) and does not match what we see at K12-partner schools.  For example, the report cites Ohio Virtual Academy as a large online public charter school with weak academic growth.  Yet, according to the most recent test results available (2014-15), OHVA’s school composite growth score was the highest possible in grades 6 – 8 and high school.

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Graduation Comes Early for a Georgia Cyber Academy 15-Year-Old

GCA Salutatorian Kevin Abraham shows off his newly-awarded diploma at graduation on May 21st, 2016.

Georgia Cyber Academy (GCA) student Kevin Abraham has always been ahead of the game when it comes to his studies. This held true for his graduation day, as GCA’s Salutatorian took the stage at age 15!

Kevin’s road to early graduation began when he skipped kindergarten, tested out of 7th grade math while in the 6th grade, and tested out of 11th grade math at the end of his 7th grade year. Kevin began online schooling at Michigan Virtual Charter Academy (MVCA).

When his family moved to Georgia, Kevin remained within the K12 family and began his schooling at GCA during the spring semester of 10th grade. This culminated in early graduation for Kevin, one of GCA’s 701 graduating seniors in 2016.

K12 Inc.'s picture

Graduation Comes Early for a Georgia Cyber Academy 15-Year-Old

GCA Salutatorian Kevin Abraham shows off his newly-awarded diploma at graduation on May 21st, 2016.

Georgia Cyber Academy (GCA) student Kevin Abraham has always been ahead of the game when it comes to his studies. This held true for his graduation day, as GCA’s Salutatorian took the stage at age 15!

Kevin’s road to early graduation began when he skipped kindergarten, tested out of 7th grade math while in the 6th grade, and tested out of 11th grade math at the end of his 7th grade year. Kevin began online schooling at Michigan Virtual Charter Academy (MVCA).

When his family moved to Georgia, Kevin remained within the K12 family and began his schooling at GCA during the spring semester of 10th grade. This culminated in early graduation for Kevin, one of GCA’s 701 graduating seniors in 2016.

Jeff Kwitowski's picture

When Journalism Crosses Into Advocacy

 

What the Mercury News Didn’t Want Readers To Know About California Virtual Academies

The Mercury News published several recent stories critical of K12 and the online charter schools California Virtual Academies (CAVA).  The paper claims to have established certain “findings,” however these are largely based on incomplete and inaccurate reporting. It is a classic case of advocacy journalism:  ignore key facts and information that do not support a desired narrative. 

For example, on student attendance, the Mercury News stated that CAVA schools claim funding for students who log on for one minute.  (It happens to be the exact same charge made by the California Teachers Association in its campaign to disparage the CAVA charter schools and force them to unionize).  It is not true. 

A log on alone—regardless of duration—would not be submitted by CAVA nor eligible for funding. Under California’s Independent Study law, a student’s education activities are used to determine attendance – not seat time.  Teachers at CAVA schools are required to determine the days the student was working and the education activities completed during the work period (both online and offline). The Mercury News simply ignores the latter. 

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