Receiving the news that you have a brain tumor is something that completely changes your life. But for Kerrie Rogers, this devastating news had an additional toll: she was only 14 years old.
Soon after receiving the news, Kerrie found herself in doctor’s appointments with specialists working to find a way to improve her condition.
“I underwent surgery and it was all removed and benign, but I developed the condition known as Cerebellar Mutism after,” Kerrie said. “It basically means that the part of my brain that is responsible for coordination and balance do not function properly.”
Kerrie had to relearn basic functions of everyday life, from swallowing and talking, to more complex tasks like walking. When Kerrie got home, she continued to have weekly therapy appointments with her occupational, physical and speech therapists.
But she did not want her physical limitations to impact her education. She wanted to find a school option that allowed her to learn and grow at a pace that would allow her to balance her recovery and continuing her classes.
That is when she discovered Michigan Virtual Charter Academy (MVCA). At first the transition to online school was difficult, and graduating seemed unattainable. “There were days it felt impossible to continue, and I wondered why I was trying so hard,” Kerrie recalls. “But when I remembered my dream of graduating and going to college, and I knew I could push through.”
The social atmosphere and school schedule provided a huge benefit for Kerrie. As a shy and introverted person, Kerrie shares that she keeps to herself a lot.
“I did very well with the online setting,” she said. “I could focus and not have to worry about cliques or fitting in. Interaction with others wasn’t forced and that encouraged me to reach out more.”
This interaction allowed Kerrie to get the time she needed with other students and allowed her to make friendships, without worrying about risking her health or other uncertainties that going to a brick-and-mortar school held.
Despite the setbacks Kerrie faced, she refused to give up and continued to push through and give her best with her schoolwork. Her learning coach and mom Kelly Rogers shares that “MVCA has been encouraging Kerrie all along to keep up her good grades.”
The support they received through Kerrie’s recovery made a huge difference. “The teachers and staff at MVCA are always very helpful and knowledgeable, helping us find the items we need to accomplish what we are working on whether it be through email message or phone call,” Kelly said.
Not only did Kerrie accomplish her goal of graduating high school, Kerrie is achieving her dream of going to college and will attend Northern Michigan University in the upcoming school year.
“The pride I feel having done what I thought was once impossible, is indescribable now,” Kerrie beams. She encourages all families to consider the opportunities online school can provide, no matter the circumstances.
To learn more about Michigan Virtual Charter Academy, visit https://mvca.k12.com