Lavinia Micheletti is a rising 10th grader at K12 International Academy (iCademy). The online environment allows Lavinia and her family the opportunity to be with her father while he is on location for his film projects.
“My husband is a key grip in the film industry,” said Lavinia’s mother, Doris Micheletti. “Basically on the technical side of the camera, positioning, rigging, some lighting, crane and dolly movements.”
The special job means the Micheletti family travels frequently. On average, each film project takes 3-to-4 months, and depending on where the set is located, Lavinia and her family follow! Her father has worked on popular films, including The Hunger Games trilogy and The Great Wall.
“Before ninth grade, I was with K12’s independent studies from fifth grade,” Lavinia said. “So, it was just my mom, the online school, and me. But when I was with iCademy, the interaction with the teachers and with the other students on an academic level in discussions was really helpful. Teachers and other students allowed me to grasp a concept more fully.”
Lavinia, 14, and her 11-year-old brother Aetius, have been with K12 for the last five years. They were both born in South Africa, and the Michelettis have also lived in and traveled to China, Paris, Germany, Budapest, Croatia, and Georgia. They have permanent homes in Los Angeles and Italy.
Lavinia was ahead of the game at her school in South Africa and they couldn’t move her to a higher grade to accommodate her academic needs. Her family got a tutor in the meantime. When they started to relocate, they decided to enroll the children into K12 and fell in love with the program.
“I like being an online student for many reasons,” Lavinia said. “Being an online student allows my family and me to travel with my dad. Being able to travel is awesome because I get to see many different places around the world. Online school allows me to be more flexible with my schedule and day. You don’t get the distraction of other students, which allows me to focus more on my work.”
Now she is thriving with the flexible and one-on-one styled curriculum. She even just made honor roll with a perfect 4.0!
“As a parent without a teaching degree, I feel like it’s literally all there,” Doris said. “All the information is there. We are supplied with all the resources. When it comes to science, it’s like a foreign language to me. K12 supplies me with everything I need to move through the lessons with the kids.”
Her mother appreciates how Lavinia has a great communication system with her teachers. She connects with them any time by making appointments or during study hall.
“This enhances her academic success,” Doris said. “I’m still in the background, but she has a teacher online to be accountable to.”
Doris also enjoys the fact her children can see the world outside of the books.
“A couple of years ago, we were in China while Lavinia was studying the Great Wall,” Doris said. “We ended up hiking the Great Wall for a few hours. She was able to really grasp the idea and the grandeur of the this wall.”
Doris explains that Lavinia has always been very independent and easily gets the scope of her school subjects.
“I am so proud of her. She really works hard at maintaining her grades,” Doris said. “So for her first year she had to push herself to contact her teachers in order to ask for help. It wasn’t comfortable at first for her. But given some time she started having these great bonds with most of her teachers. It was such a positive thing for her and she really flourished. She appreciated the feedback and the help they gave her. She appreciated that the teachers were flexible, open-minded and approachable. She is a determined child, which is part of her success.”
Doris and her husband have always been very communicative and approachable with their children.
“There has never been a ‘taboo’ conversation where the kids cannot discuss with us,” Doris said. “So, it is just normal to be involved with our kids in most things.”
The Michelettis want to be able to travel the world and to give their children the same, if not better, schooling. Their friends and family are sometimes surprised by the online schooling method, but they try to educate them about the benefits of the online environment.
“People aren’t aware that they have options until they see another family is doing it, and doing it well,” Doris said. “Online school was our way forward and that is what worked best of four family. We didn’t even consider brick-and-mortar schooling; for us it felt unnatural.”
Lavinia sees herself taking after her father and pursuing a career in the film industry and continuing to see the world. She would like to become a director.
“My kids are better kids for it,” Doris said. “They are well-mannered, engaging and have no problems taking part in ‘grown up’ conversations, which people are wowed by.”