Virtual school graduates continually tell me how the skills they learned through a virtual school experience better prepared them for life after high school. Aaron Ridenour, Ohio Connections Academy’s valedictorian, picked up on this point even before graduating, so I just had to share his amazing graduation speech:
Aaron Ridenour, Graduation Speech, 2010
Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished faculty and administrators, friends and family, and, of course, the Ohio Connections Academy class of 2010: I would like to thank you for giving me the honor to speak on behalf of the class of 2010.
My fellow classmates, we’ve all made it through online high school. Not just any high school, but Ohio Connections Academy—a school that has given us the opportunity to reach our goals and maximum potential: to be the best that we could be. We were pioneers on the forefront of a new and innovative form of education, and we encountered many obstacles. We made it through semester and interim deadlines.
Along the way, we became independent and self-motivated students. Our teachers taught us how to write a research paper, apply the scientific method, and use the Pythagorean theorem. What I believe they taught us the most was to think creatively, have confidence in ourselves, be responsible individuals, have goals, and have the fortitude to achieve those goals. When our social studies teachers were teaching us about the past, they were opening our eyes to what our future could hold. When our English teachers were teaching us about ...