Connections Academy, Leading Virtual School Provider, Graduates Record Number of Seniors

Virtual High School: Diverse Senior Class Heading to Four-year Universities, Community Colleges and Vocational Programs

Baltimore, MD, July 2, 2010 — Connections Academy, a leading provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual public and private schools for students in grades K–12, is celebrating the graduation of its largest ever senior class at the end of this 2009–10 academic year.   Nearly 600 12th graders from 12 Connections Academy virtual public schools across 11 states*—plus the online private school National Connections Academy—celebrated their achievement during traditional commencement ceremonies in their local communities.

Connections Academy’s 2010 graduating class is 210% bigger than its class of 2009 graduates, reflecting the rapid growth of the virtual school program.  While most CA graduates are looking forward to starting four-year colleges and universities or community colleges, others will attend vocational schools, enter the military, and start careers. 

CA graduates have been accepted in more than 100 different colleges and universities, including prestigious higher education institutions such as Harvard University, Clemson University, UCLA, and New York University. Other leading colleges and universities accepting Connections Academy graduates include:   Auburn University, Trinity College, Boston College, the University of Michigan, Drexel University, Penn State, and St. Olaf College.

 “We are very proud of our graduating class of seniors and wish them all the best,” commented Barbara Dreyer, president and CEO of Connections Academy.  “Our talented graduates are breaking new ground and helping to redefine education and educational success—a Connections Academy diploma not only demonstrates achievement, but innovation. And it is wonderful that so many colleges and universities are embracing this innovation and recognizing the quality education provided by Connections Academy.” 

The Connections Academy graduating class of 2010 represents a highly diverse and accomplished group of students.  They are National Merit Scholarship Finalists, like Kevin Johnson of MTS Minnesota Connections Academy.  They are future Olympians, like Arizona Connections Academy’s Lyndsey Fry, who plays on the U18 Women’s National Hockey Team. They are Nickelodeon stars, like Ashley Argota of Capistrano Connections Academy.  Budding educators, artists, business leaders and scientists, like Aaron Ridenour, class Valedictorian of his senior class at Ohio Connections Academy.  Graduates come from large families, single-parent households, major cities and small towns, and from states like South Carolina and Oregon. 

Connections Academy schools deliver top quality, personalized 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 Connections Academy's Personalized Performance Learning® approach, students use daily lesson plans and curriculum materials provided by Connections Academy. Teachers develop a learning plan for each student, whose progress is tracked through a proprietary, web-based Learning Management System.  Nationwide, 15 Connections Academy public virtual schools in 14 states and the private National Connections Academy served approximately 25,000 students in grades K-12 in the 2009-2010 school year. 

Connections Academy opened its first school—serving 400 K-8 students—in 2002.  Strong parental demand for this innovative alternative has led Connections Academy to grow its school network and student body by double-digits annually since then.  In 2005, in response to strong parental demand, the school introduced its virtual high school program, a challenging, standards-based alternative to a brick-and-mortar school. The virtual high school program includes a wide variety of rigorous courses which provide a solid foundation for whatever path its graduates choose—attending college or starting a career.  The Connections Academy virtual high school program also offers honors and AP courses, and the support of certified counselors who provide students with college and career-planning services. 

* Of the 15 Connections Academy virtual public schools serving students across the country in the 2009–2010 school year, 12 schools offered 12th grade

About Connections Academy
Connections Academy is a leading, fully accredited provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual schooling for students in grades K–12. Through tuition-free public schools, full-time and part-time private school programs, and turnkey online courses for bricks and mortar schools, Connections Academy delivers superior, personalized educations 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 2010–11 school year, Connections Academy will serve students in Arizona, California (Southern and Central), Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Wisconsin, and Wyoming through its public school programs. 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