Katie Poindexter's picture

Best Practices for Virtual Teaching

I experienced culture shock during my first year as a virtual teacher at Virginia Virtual Academy (VAVA). After six years in a brick-and-mortar setting, I thought I had the skills necessary to be an effective virtual teacher from the start. I soon learned that virtual teaching requires a different skill set and a different approach than I had mastered during my brick-and-mortar days.

Virtual classrooms have all of the same components of a brick-and-mortar classroom, but in a different format. Our virtual classes are held live with a teacher certified in Virginia state standards. Although we do not ‘see’ the children’s faces every day in our classroom, teachers still deliver live instruction through an online platform called Blackboard Collaborate. Students are able to communicate through direct chat, microphone and even video. After much research, amazing training from veteran VAVA teachers, K12 professional development, and first-hand experience, I have formed my own ‘best practices’ for teaching in a virtual setting.

K12 Inc.'s picture

How Online Learning Changed This AZVA Student's Life

Written by Jenna Needham

Education is not one-size-fits-all.  Students learn in different ways and benefit from varying teaching methods, which is not always available in brick and mortar schools.

Sixth grader Gabriel Anduaga-Arias is a bright student, but he found that he needed a little extra time to learn certain concepts.  When he wasn’t given that time in his brick and mortar school, he became less and less confident in himself and his education.  It got to the point where his own classmates began to bully him.  This is when his family decided to make the switch to Arizona Virtual Academy (AZVA).

Chase Eskelsen's picture

One Fish. Two Fish. Old Data. New Data.

One fish. Two fish. Old fish. New fish. Everyone likes a good Dr. Seuss story. They are simple and they tell a simple story. If I could tell educational researchers one thing, it would be that it is time to tell a new Dr. Seuss story about online education. Over the last 18 months, we have repeatedly seen the same story, the same points, and even the same data set that is several years old. Even Dr. Seuss knows that we’ve told the ‘One Fish’ story too many times. The one fish story has been told and has over time morphed into the old fish story of eSchools. 

K12 Inc.'s picture

OHVA Student One-Third of Popular Music Trio


Written by Jenna Needham


Seventeen-year-old Grant Flick has traveled all around the U.S. to perfect his craft on the violin, mandolin, and tenor guitar for the past few years.  He has gotten so good with these instruments that he has begun to perform at events and festivals all over Northwest Ohio, including at the Black Swamp Arts Festival in Bowling Green with his trio, Flick, Turner, and Warren. This frequent traveling and time to practice were only possible after he enrolled in Ohio Virtual Academy (OHVA). 


Grant was always a strong student and independent learner, so he did well in brick and mortar schools.  After realizing he wanted to commit more to his music, he needed a more flexible schedule.  Grant did his own research into alternative schools and quickly made the transition to the online setting.   


"OHVA allowed grant to meet his academic goals," said his mother, Lorraine. "The independence his has gained from working online, setting his own schedule, pacing himself with his work load, managing his own business, communicating with others and meeting deadlines has provided a strong foundation for success in college." 


OHVA provided just the type of schedule Grant needed, but the supportive and efficient staff at the school were a huge added bonus. 


K12 Inc.'s picture

Made for the Spotlight, CAVA Student Fights Bullying With Kindness

Written by Savannah Norton

Akyra Carter is known as many things in her household: an actress, a model, a pageant princess, an anti-bullying advocate, and also a 2nd grader at California Virtual Academy (CAVA).

Her mother, Diana Carter, enrolled Akyra in CAVA this past August to help her receive a proper education and support while she pursued her passion of acting.

Diana appreciates the “24/7 support" from teachers as well as school advisors.

“Time is so important for any mom, but when you’re a ‘Hollywood Mom’ on such a tight schedule it is critical,” Diana said.

Akyra’s life in the spotlight first began when she started doing pageants when she was 11 months old. This soon evolved into modeling in print and on runways.

“She loved being on stage from the moment we started,” Diana said. “In 2014, we started working with Jody Taylor of Sixty5 Media who packaged Akyra and walked us to the next level. Like any mom, I was nervous, but Jody was very intuitive on Akyra’s strengths and limits and showed us what Akyra was capable of."