Virtual School

You launched a new virtual school: Now what?

The pandemic presented a cascade of new enrollment challenges that has spurred a renewed interest in creating virtual schools as part of a district’s offerings. But now that districts are attracting new virtual students, how do they ensure the programs are effectively meeting their needs? Throughout this conversation, we explore how two districts are creating new learning options to support dynamic student needs, the challenges these programs present, as well as recommendations for other leaders who are considering adopting or expanding their own districtwide virtual programs.


Lessons Learned From Upscaling a Virtual School

Whether a district is launching, implementing or sustaining a virtual learning program, administrators and educators have the opportunity to think about how they can educate their students in a different way yet maintain the foundations of effective teaching and learning. Within a changing educational environment, school leaders can continue to improve and provide better programs that make a positive and lasting impact in their students’ lives.  Join us for this session on a practitioner’s perspective and the lessons she learned when starting her program.

The Blueprint for Success with District-wide Virtual Learning

If there’s one word that continues to surface with educators and what’s required of them to lead effectively, it seems to be empathy. We have seen many districts display a powerful, empathic leadership style throughout the pandemic. This could not be more true for the two leaders we spoke with from Tucson Unified School District and how they have navigated the challenges and opportunities the pandemic has created for their district.

Streamlining District-wide Communication: Best Practices from Tucson Unified School District

In our latest podcast episode of Opportunity Thrives, we had a chance to chat with Leslie Lenhart, the Communications Director for Tucson Unified School District in Tucson, Arizona. Leslie shares the district’s strategies to be very intentional and responsive during the pandemic, including many practical tips that others can implement within their own districts.

Apex Learning Announces Collaboration with PowerSchool to Streamline Digital Curriculum Integrations for Students and Educators

2020 — “We recognize that seamless integration of digital tools within a district's ecosystem is critically important, especially in light of an increasing need for high-quality, distance learning and virtual programs,” said Chris Porter, CEO, Apex Learning. “This collaboration with PowerSchool will save educators time and deliver improved experiences for students, teachers and administrators.” 

Is it possible to build meaningful relationships with students (from a distance)?

In our 17th episode of Opportunity Thrives, a podcast committed to better supporting the needs of today’s secondary students, we explore this very question.

We know that education leaders are doing all they can to ensure the safety of students, teachers, and staff for this fall. For many districts, that has meant starting off the year with fully virtual learning programs.

Online learning is not the same as learning in the classroom, but that’s okay

Online learning was never intended to replicate classroom learning.  But that doesn’t mean it can’t be just as effective. Classroom learning is fundamentally built on the ability to interact with one another – student-to-teacher or student-to-student – in a face-to-face environment.  And any effort to replicate the classroom experience online will likely overlook the benefits of using technology.

A Virtual School Success Story: One district shares how to integrate a virtual program, including pitfalls to avoid, and strategies for getting it right the first time

We know that education leaders are doing all they can to ensure the safety of students, teachers, and staff for the start of school this fall. Many districts are also navigating numerous requests from families to offer a virtual program. Districts may have addressed these concerns in their reopening plans and are now finding that the current situation requires further action.