About Our Online School in Maine

What is virtual school? Maine Connections Academy (MCA) is a public virtual charter school that serves students in grades 7–12. As a tuition-free online school in Maine, MCA brings a high-quality public education directly into the homes of students.



Get to Know Maine Connections Academy

Virtual school parents, students and teachers talk about what they enjoy most about Maine Connections Academy (MCA). They discuss the level of freedom, schedule flexibility and the deep connections they have formed at MCA as well as other aspects of the online learning experience.

Authorized by the Maine Charter School Commission

The nonprofit governing board of Maine Connections Academy has been authorized by the Maine Charter School Commission (MCSC).

Notices and Information for the Public

As a public virtual charter school, MCA is committed to meeting the state of Maine’s rigorous standards for academic achievement and accountability. Our school board adopts a regular meeting schedule, and governing board meetings are open to the public.

The Maine Connections Academy Virtual School Experience

We share a common goal with parents: to ensure that students become productive, successful, and confident adults. Maine Connections Academy’s full-time virtual school program helps online students in Maine build on their individual strengths and interests in a setting that is both safe and connected to a larger community.

Below are a few of the driving forces behind this unique approach:

Free Education, Outstanding Curriculum

At MCA, students receive a great public online education at no charge. There are no materials fees and no tuition charges. Our virtual school classes meet and exceed all national and state standards while also integrating the best texts, materials, and resources available to create a curriculum that keeps students engaged in new and creative ways. In order to align with Maine state-standards, all Maine Connections Academy students are also required to take the same assessments as traditional school students.

Exceptional Teachers

The teachers are the foundation of the Maine Connections Academy experience. They are talented, passionate, certified, and specially trained to excel in online teaching. Teachers are drawn to our virtual school in Maine because they care about kids and believe that personalized instruction really works.

Individual Attention

Each and every student has unique abilities, and all students perform better when they receive individual attention in a nurturing learning environment. These guiding principles are the foundation of Connections Academy’s Personalized Performance Learning® approach. Using this method, teachers get to know the learning style, skills, and interests of each online school student so they can give every student the best opportunity to excel. This approach also allows students to accelerate learning in areas of strength or receive extra attention in areas of weakness.

Parent-Supported Learning

When parents take an active role in education, students prosper. As Learning Coaches, parents can be closely involved in their children’s daily education. They’re able to see real progress every day and work with dedicated online teachers to keep their students on track. Parents say this involvement is one of the most gratifying aspects of the virtual academy program.

Easy-to-Use Technology

Connections Academy’s user-friendly system, Connexus®, lets students access a welcoming and collaborative learning experience anywhere they have an Internet connection. Parents love how easy it is to schedule lessons and access grades, too!

Socialization, Community, and Friendships

Learning online doesn’t mean learning alone. Even in a virtual setting, students meet regularly in online LiveLesson® sessions and have opportunities to share ideas, compare experiences, and have fun learning together in the online classroom or in student clubs. And the flexibility of the program allows plenty of opportunities for students to pursue and explore other extracurricular activities outside of Maine Connections Academy or through Connections Academy’s clubs!

Doug Bourget

Meet the Principal

Doug Bourget

Doug Bourget is the principal at Maine Connections Academy (MCA). He began his teaching career in 2010 and initially joined MCA in 2014 as an English teacher. He shares more about his experience at MCA below.

“I always wanted to teach, but I was initially planning to teach literature at the college level. I became interested in K—12 education while in college. As I studied philosophy and literature while traveling to different places, I saw the immense difference a positive role model can make during one's developmental years. I want to help students gain access to opportunities and exposure to new ways of thought.

I enjoy being the principal for MCA because the staff and students have deep discussions and really care about learning. Our staff is incredibly supportive and our students are very unique, caring, and independent. The online environment removes some barriers for students and works well in many cases. Students have the flexibility to work according to their own schedules and in their own environments. Our model also helps connect students and teachers at the one-on-one level.

Students at MCA self-advocate, work independently, and complete a challenging curriculum—they are disciplined leaders. Our students also gain experience with digital skills and work habits that will transfer to the workplace and college. Every two weeks, they have active check-ins with other students to ensure support, as well as to facilitate student self-reflection and communication. Although there are many reasons why a student might come here, our students are very cooperative and respectful. A spectator at our field trips would not know that this is an online school. Students work very hard and achieve a lot while building a real community.

I would tell a prospective parent that many students are successful in the online environment, but the transition can be jarring. Our most successful students have structured work days, parent guidance, and the ability to call us when they have a question. We will do our best to help you and your family work well within this environment, and our teachers will not forget about you or give up on you—your family is welcome here.”

Outside of his principal duties, Mr. Bourget enjoys cooking. He has cooked in several restaurants throughout the U.S. while traveling abroad.

Education:

  • BA, Literature with a minor in visual arts, Marlboro College
  • MA, Teaching, University of Southern California
  • Certificate of advanced study, Educational leadership (expected Spring 2017)