Partnership Between Florida Virtual School and Connections Academy Expands Online Learning Opportunities
Orlando, FL (August 8, 2008) – Florida students in elementary and middle school will have another opportunity to enroll in online classes this fall through the newly minted, Florida Virtual School’s Connections Academy (FLVSCA). The result of a unique partnership between Florida Virtual School (FLVS), the state’s public virtual school, and the Florida Connections Academy, one of the state’s top rated K-8 virtual school programs operated by Connections Academy, LLC, a highly respected national virtual school provider, FLVSCA was created specifically to help districts meet the requirements of a new state law requiring all school districts to offer full-time, online learning to public school students. FLVSCA is the first collaborative program specifically created to serve public school students in grades K-5. The new program will also expand FLVS’ existing middle school program.
“Today’s announcement, and our partnership with Connections Academy, will advance our overall mission to give all Florida families a variety of high-quality educational options,” said FLVS President and CEO Julie Young. “Working in partnership with districts, we believe this new program will give parents of young, public school children more options for learning.”
FLVSCA will operate on a traditional, 180-day calendar and all courses will be delivered by Florida certified teachers. The program will help all public school districts comply with the new state law – the School District Virtual Instruction Program – that requires them to offer students a virtual learning option by the 2009-2010 school year and expand access to online learning to all Florida students through the award-winning FLVS.
“Our partnership with FLVS and with districts throughout Florida is grounded in our mission to deliver a highly personalized program that meets the full range of an individual student’s educational needs,” said Connections Academy President Barbara Dreyer. “We're excited about using the flexible pace options, inherent in online learning, to target each child's learning needs.”
FLVSCA will provide students in grades K-8 with expanded online learning options that feature personalized and flexible instruction. The program will consist of a print-rich curriculum that combines high quality textbooks from leading publishers and cutting-edge, easy-to-use technology resources and hands-on materials and Florida certified teachers will follow daily detailed lesson plans that can be personalized to meet individual student needs. Teachers will work closely with parents or other “Learning Coaches” to ensure all learning objectives are achieved.
Both FLVS and FCA also will continue to operate their existing programs in 2008-09.
For the past decade, FLVS has supplemented the traditional education experience for thousands of students (public, private, parochial and home schooled) by offering them a unique learning experience not bound by time. As a special school district serving the entire state, FLVS has developed innovative educational practices to provide students with a high quality, technology-rich educational experience to help them gain the knowledge and skills for success in the 21st century.
Since 2003, Connections Academy has operated Florida Connections Academy (FCA), a full-time virtual program for public school students in grades K-8, in partnership with the Florida Department of Education. Connections Academy is an accredited program that provides a complete curriculum and instructional support to students, and their families, learning outside the traditional classroom. FCA earned a school grade of “A” in both the 2007-07 and 2007-08 school years in the state’s rigorous school accountability program.
FLVSCA will be offered to students through school districts across the state.
About Florida Virtual School
Florida Virtual School (FLVS) is an established leader in developing and providing virtual K-12 education solutions to students throughout the country. A nationally recognized e-Learning model, FLVS founded in 1997 and was the country’s first, state-wide Internet-based public high school. Today, FLVS provides flexible learning options for all students, including more than 80 courses for middle and high school students. FLVS is governed by an independent educational entity with a gubernatorial appointed board and is the only public school where funding is tied directly to student performance. Additional information can be found at www.flvs.net
About Connections Academy
Connections Academy, founded in 2001, is a leading national provider of high quality, highly accountable virtual public schools in fourteen states operated in partnership with charter schools, school districts, state departments of education and others. Connections Academy schools deliver a top-quality, personalized “virtual” education for students that combines certified teachers, a proven curriculum, technology tools, and community experiences to create a supportive and successful environment for children who want an individualized approach to education in grades K-12. In 2008-09 Connections Academy will serve students in Arizona, California (Southern and Central),
Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Minnesota, Missouri (through the MoVIP program), Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Wisconsin (not all schools include all grades). For more information, call 800-382-6010 or visit