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Special Elections Education Online Class Offered for Oregon Connections Academy Students

-- State Legislator Featured Guest for LiveLesson® Session October 26th --

Oregon State Legislator Sherrie Sprenger

SCIO, OR (October 22, 2012) – It’s that time in the election season when even the youngest children know something is up. There's a constant stream of political advertisements on television, mail flyers, and lawn signs. But making sense of the electoral process can be challenging for students. 

This week Oregon Connections Academy is hosting a special Elections Education LiveLesson® session for high school students featuring a State Legislator to offer them her perspective on the importance of learning about the election process and civic engagement. 

The session will run from 1–2 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 26

State Representative Sherrie Sprenger from Scio will be the featured guest for the American Government classes taught by Oregon Connections Academy teachers; Charlie Tumelty and Eric Comstock. The teachers are combining their classes for this event and expect up to 60 students in grades 9–12 to attend online.

Oregon Connections Academy started in 2005 under a charter with the Scio School District. It is a tuition-free virtual public school serving over 3,300 students in grades K–12 throughout the state.

“I am always eager to visit with students in the community and encourage our young people to learn more about how their government works,” said State Representative Sherrie Sprenger (R-Scio). “This special online program with these Oregon Connections Academy classes will give me the unique opportunity to talk with students across the state. It’s important to incorporate civics education into the curriculum especially if we can engage students to get involved in the issues that impact their lives. We know an informed citizenry is crucial to making our democracy work.” 

Representative Sprenger is a former school board member, has served on a variety of education committees at the State Capitol and has supported several legislative efforts to enhance civic literacy in Oregon Schools. During the LiveLesson® session, students will be able to chat online with Representative Sprenger asking any questions they might have about state government, how ideas become laws, the elections process and other areas. 

“I am excited for the opportunity to have Representative Sprenger come talk to my class so that students can make a connection with a legislator, to go beyond the theory of government and other topics provided in class, and understand that real people with real life experiences serve as elected officials,” said Charlie Tumelty, one of the American Government teachers leading the LiveLesson® session. “Oftentimes, we think of elected officials as part of some machine without understanding who and what is behind it. I think my students will gain invaluable insight and have a really unique experience to bolster their education as well as understanding of politics.” 

“Many students come into my class without any prior exposure to how the government works,” said Eric Comstock, another American Government teacher coordinating the upcoming session. “It’s important to make a lasting impression on them so that they feel empowered to exercise their democratic voice. Opportunities like this one with Representative Sprenger are exactly what facilitate that goal.”

Oregon Connections Academy combines state certified teachers, a standards-aligned curriculum, unique technology tools, an extensive selection of electives and clubs, and community experiences to create an individualized alternative to the bricks-and-mortar classroom. Learn more about the school at or call (800) 382–6010.

About Connections Academy 
Connections Academy is a leading provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual schooling for students in grades K through 12. Through tuition-free public schools, and full-time and part-time private school programs, Connections Academy delivers superior, personalized education for students, with the freedom and flexibility to experience our online learning community from anywhere. The combination of certified teachers, a proven curriculum, technology tools, and community experiences creates a supportive and successful online learning opportunity for families and children who want an individualized approach to education. In the 2012–13 school year, Connections Academy will serve students in 22 states via 24 virtual public schools. It serves students worldwide through the online private school, National Connections Academy. Connections Academy offers grades K through 12, though some public school programs do not offer all grades. For more information, call 800–382–6010 or visit Connections Academy and its parent company, Connections Education, are part of the global learning company Pearson (NYSE:PSO).