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Virtual schools experience increased enrollment

Posted at 6:04 AM, Sep 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-09 09:04:08-04

BAKERSFIELD, CA. — After two weeks, even virtual learning schools such as California Virtual Academies are feeling the pressure this school year.

California Virtual Academies is now on their nineteenth year of instruction and say this is the first year they’ve had to cap enrollment due to high demand.

“We’ve been teaching virtually for a lot of years and the curriculum itself is scripted, so when a kindergarten student comes in the learning coach has a page that says 'ok today here is what you need to do,'" said Angie Covel, Director of High School for CAVA.

The academy has over 1,000 Kern County students enrolled in their virtual school this year and according to the director of the high school, parents like knowing what their kids will learn every day as well as how much time to allocate for live instruction.

“We've heard a lot of appreciate for the structure we provide. They know whats coming, they can see the plan ahead, they can see what time the class is and what assignments need to be done ahead of time," said Covel.

The academy says many parents made the initial switch in march after their first experience with brick and mortar distance learning.

“It was districts doing the very best they could in short notice so the emergency learning wasn’t working well for their students and they needed something with more structure. I think a lot of families at that point said we need to be somewhere stable," said Covel.

A kindergarten teachers for CAVA says one of the benefits of virtual learning that is different from distance learning is the flexibility.

Jodi sinor/kindergarten teacher for california virtual academies:

“To give you an idea of what it looks like for families, they have access to the online school from midnight to midnight. So if you have an early riser at 4:30 a.m. and they want to get work done early and then do their lecture, they’re done. If they want to do a live lecture at 8 a.m. and then do their work, they're done after that," said Jodi Sinor, Kindergarten teacher for CAVA.

And even though they’ve always been virtual, things have changed this year for them too.

“This year is different from last year because at least last year we did in person assessments or socials," said Sinor.

California Virtual Academies is currently accepting applications for virtual teachers due to high demand.