Tara Ann Rader
Tara Ann is a Learning Coach to her daughter, Victoria, who is an elementary school student at Reach Cyber Charter School (Reach Cyber). Her daughter previously attended a traditional brick-and-mortar school, but her family decided to seek other options when the quality of her schoolwork began to suffer. Tara Ann and her husband knew that there were better options out there that could help Victoria succeed. Victoria enrolled at the end of the 2016–17 school year, and her parents are very grateful for the support that Reach Cyber has provided. Read more of Tara’s story below.
“My student struggled for five years in our local public school. After years of poor grades, ‘behavioral problems,’ and tears and battles, I needed to find a way for her to love school again. She’s a bright child who just found herself forced into the wrong setting. Her teachers would always comment about how sweet and kind she was, yet they would continually admonish her for fidgeting, being disorganized, and not wanting to complete busywork.
I had only lightly considered the cyber school option for a year because, honestly, I didn’t want my child home with me. I began my research of all the cyber schools available in Pennsylvania. I narrowed it down to my top two, and then I signed up to attend an open house information session for Reach Cyber. Mr. McMurray told us all about the school, showed us the curriculum, and explained about Reach’s STEM focus. The Connexus® system, the curriculum, and the school staff impressed me. It was a tough decision, but necessary.
I can say now, though, that I am so happy we chose online school. I get to watch my daughter progress, see her blossom, and be proud of her accomplishments and determination. In just a few short months of working together, the issues that former teachers complained about are mostly remedied. Reach Cyber has given me back my bright, happy, carefree child. It has given me back peaceful evenings, calm mornings, and the freedom to live by our own schedule. Most of all, Reach Cyber has given my child back her self-confidence. My C-average student has become an A+-average student.
When many parents are considering cyber school, they bring up their concern about socialization. Personally, I find that my daughter has been able to have deeper, more personal social interactions through local activities and events. Victoria is a Junior Girl Scout in a mixed troop of approximately thirty girls. She also takes horseback riding lessons weekly with other cyber school and homeschool students. I am a member of a local Facebook group for cyber schoolers and homeschoolers that hosts local field trips and gatherings. Victoria is already developing multiple friendships with children her age. In her former school, children really only interacted during their fifteen-minute recess and lunch period—barely enough time to develop any type of meaningful relationship.
As a Learning Coach, I love working one-on-one with my student throughout the day, and if we need help on a subject, my student or I can easily contact her teachers through the Connexus WebMail system or directly by phone. The teacher can meet Victoria in a private LiveLesson® session room to provide personal instruction. Thanks to the ease of communication, I feel connected to her teachers and well supported as a Learning Coach—so much so that it’s easy to forget they have other students to attend to!”
I can say now, though, that I am so happy we chose online school. I get to watch my daughter progress, see her blossom, and be proud of her accomplishments and determination.