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CVCS Student Shares His Anti-Bullying Advice

Written by: Savannah Norton

October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Some students turn to online school because of bullying so that they can focus on their academics.

Matthew Varga is a 16-year-old who just started his junior year with Chicago Virtual Charter School (CVCS). From his big smile and good grades, you would never knew that he was severely bullied while at a brick and mortar school.

“The stress put me in the hospital,” Matthew said.

When 6th grade came along, Matthew enrolled in CVCS for the 2011-12 school year. Since joining the online school, he has found a safe haven where he can learn and thrive in his studies.

“My only regret is I did not start my boys sooner,” said Matthew’s mother, Lisa Varga. “Matt has been a whole different person since starting at CVCS.”

When Matthew was 8 years old, he was diagnosed with separation anxiety and depression.

“All this with the bullying made him not want to socialize or go to school,” Lisa said. “Since starting at CVCS, Matt has so much more confidence socially. He actually looks forward to his learning center day so he can see his friends at school - it’s amazing!”

“It is nice to be able to go to school and learn instead of being worried about being bullied,” Matthew said.

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K12's 31 Simple Acts of Kindness: Saying No to Bullying

Written by: Tatyana White-Jenkins


With October marking National Bullying Prevention MonthK12 is bringing awareness with its K12 Simple Acts of Kindness” campaign.  


For every day in October, K12 has created a calendar of kind actsParents and students are encouraged to help fight bullying with kindness by focusing on a simple act each day 


We are intentional to focus on the growing problem of bullying every year, particularly for the month of October,” K12 content writer Letise Dennis said. “We decided this year that instead of simply addressing how bad the problem is, we wanted to provide intentional ways to combat bullying through simple acts of showing kindness. 

Laurel Barrette's picture

Detroit News Letter To The Editor: Empower High School Drop-outs With the Second Chance They Deserve

I am a high school drop-out.

Despite graduating from college with honors, earning two graduate degrees and professional success, my status as a high school drop-out is difficult to admit, even to myself. It fills me with embarrassment and shame due to common misconceptions, namely that we drop-outs are dumb, lazy, apathetic, and untalented.

We’re not.

As our nation marks National Dropout Prevention Month in October, we should empower drop-outs with the second chance at diplomas they deserve. They don’t require pity. They do require school choice options. Online charter schools serve as a critical last resort for many students who are simply out of options. These schools welcome society’s most vulnerable youth and offer them another shot at education, gainful employment and financial success.

Online charter schools provide such alternatives but seem to be under siege in the court of public opinion when it comes to graduation rates. Such criticism is overly-simplistic.

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K12 to Present Personalized Learning Findings at National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

Written by Jenna Needham

The beginning of October also marks the start of National Dropout Prevention Month.  In hopes of finding new ways to help prevent premature withdrawal from schools, experts from across the country are gathering in Detroit to attend the National Dropout Prevention Network Conference (NDPNC) from October 2nd-5th

At this conference, there will be numerous speakers as well as workshops.  The keynote speakers at the conference include many big names such as Eric Thomas, an actual high school dropout with an incredible story that led him back to school, Dr. Russell Quaglia, who runs the Quaglia Institute for School Voice and Aspirations, and Barrington Irving Jr., the youngest person to pilot a plane around the world solo.

Two presenters from K12, Laurel Barrette, Director of Dropout Prevention, and Teren Jackson, Director of Student Support Services, will talk about ‘What We’ve Learned Using Integrated Student Supports and Data to Drive Student and Family Re-Engagement in the Virtual School Setting.’  Laurel is an extremely qualified presenter in this case, since she was a dropout herself.  Her personal situation is what made her such a strong advocate for school choice.

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Grace in Motion: Meet This GCA Dancer and Scholar


Written by Jenna Needham


At first, Mary-Kate Billings needed alternative school options because her pre-professional dance conservatory program demanded a lot of her time.  She enrolled in Georgia Cyber Academy (GCA) in the 5th grade. Now seven years later, she didn’t realize how much the school would affect her in other ways. 


Through GCA, Mary-Kate has been able to meet more diverse and likeminded students, participate in and lead countless school groups and organizations, give back to her community, and accept internship opportunities with K12 Inc.  She also volunteers at her local library’s various children's programs. 


Georgia Cyber Academy has benefitted Mary-Kate academically as well as socially, and watching her flourish in such a contemporary and unique setting has been wonderful, said her mother, Ann, adding that her daughter's success has been made possible by GCA's teachers and administration.