This school year has been extremely different from anything we’ve encountered before. The fall 2020 semester has proven extremely challenging for parents, teachers and students alike. And the winter 2021 semester will be no different. The pandemic has added an incredible list of new challenges, and many students experience very different realities depending on where they live and the study options that are available to them.
In most states and provinces, the government is keeping schools open, but many high schools have incorporated hybridized eLearning models into the mix.
In some specific areas, schools are closed and students are expected to rely entirely on virtual learning to complete their credits and earn their diplomas.
Some eLearning tools have been provided by individual states and provinces, while in some places, students are opting to study at an online school because they want to enjoy the experience and professional polish of these schools — a luxury not always present in the public system.
Being so late off the starting block and building their eLearning platforms only as the need has arisen has meant that many of these public-school programs and platforms are still suffering from rushed rollout and the consequences are felt even into the new year.
The Benefits of eLearning with an Experienced Virtual School
The good news is that private virtual high schools have been specializing in remote eLearning for well over a decade and bring a great deal of polish to the experience. Not only are students given access to interactive lessons, but the best virtual high schools will have dedicated, accredited teachers who respond to student needs quickly — grading assignments and returning them within a day or two, ensuring that students have time for follow-up questions before moving on to the next module.
If you’re looking into private eLearning for your child, look for a virtual high school with a dedicated guidance counsellor staff separate from the teacher support system in place. The best schools will have automatic warning systems informing counsellors if students are falling behind or not logging into the program regularly.
With a dedicated support staff, students also know they can get answers and help quickly if they have any trouble with assignments, the portal or the platform.
Don’t Ignore the Soft Skills
Another added benefit of eLearning is the natural fostering of soft skills. Speak with any educator and they will tell you that while kids attend high school to learn core skills such as Math and English, there are other tools to master as well. Virtual study — even more so than traditional classroom learning — helps students learn discipline, time management, self-reliance, and initiative.
Studying at a virtual high school gives students the opportunity to learn fundamental traits they can take with them outside of the virtual classroom. Soft skills give students the chance to grow into responsible young adults, and for any students looking to master alternative, digital pathways to college or university, these skills also equip them with the tools they’ll need to prosper in an increasingly virtual world.
If your child is thinking about virtual study to help them stay on the path to high school graduation, be sure to choose one that offers the best eLearning package to help keep your child engaged and motivated.