How to Switch from Homeschool to Online Public School

4 min to read
An online public school teacher on a laptop.

Deciding where and how to educate your student is a big decision. Some people turn to homeschooling but may decide to explore other options if they realize that it’s not the best fit for their family. Online school from home can be a viable option for parents, guardians, and students looking for an alternative to homeschooling and in-person schooling. As of 2019, there were roughly 375,000 students enrolled in full-time online school.

As we compare homeschool vs. online school, we’ll provide tips on how to successfully make the leap to virtual schooling and why some families make the decision.

Online Schooling vs. Homeschooling

If you’ve asked, “Is online school considered homeschool?” the answer is no. There are distinct differences between the two.

What is Homeschooling?

When a child is homeschooled, a parent oversees the student’s learning environment, schedule, curriculum, and everything else that involves their education. Parents or guardians take on the role of teacher, counselor, and administrator. They must also make sure that their students have enough opportunities to socialize and develop other life skills they will need.

What is an Online School?

An online school is like a traditional public or private school, just without the actual school building.  The online school provides a curriculum, and qualified teachers, regular classes, assessments, and exams, and students graduate with an accredited high school diploma. 

Tips to Switch from Homeschool to Virtual Schooling

If you’re thinking of making the jump from homeschool to online public school, here are some tips to make it as seamless as possible for you and your student.

Do Your Homework

Not all online schools are created equally. Just as you would with any school, you’ll want to do your homework when it comes to choosing the right one. Look to see that the realities of online learning from home are right for your family. Decide if you want to attend a private or public school. Does the program offered have the same goals and flexibility your family needs? Create a list of your top priorities and deal-breakers and learn more about each online school program before enrolling.  

Talk to Parents & Students

If possible, reach out to parents and students who have taken online classes. Get their insights on the school and the curriculum. This will not only help you to see how school from home works, but can also allow you to meet new people already in the program. This can help with socialization and also form future study groups should your student enroll.

Gather the Right Documents

If you’re thinking of making the switch from homeschool to online school, you want to be sure you gather the right documents, which often include things such as proof of residency, transcripts, and relevant health information. You’ll need the same paperwork that a traditional school requires. Also, decide if you are going to be your student’s Learning Coach or if you want to appoint another trusted adult to help guide your student’s education journey with their teachers. 

Common Reasons Why Families Switch from Homeschool to Online School

While every parent or guardian will have their personal reasons for switching to virtual schooling, here are some of the most common:

Access to Certified Teachers

When you choose an online school, you have access to trained and certified teachers who will provide instruction, grading, and support. Parents and guardians don’t have to worry about lesson plans, grades, or teaching. Students receive instruction in real-time classroom sessions. This not only gives students access to professional teachers but also takes the stress off the parent or guardian.

More Structure

Online schools can provide a structured plan for each semester. This includes assignments, due dates, and a grading system.

Efficient Learning

When students take part in school from home online, it allows them to use their time efficiently. They can make the most of their learning time at home and still have time to do the things they love. Students can learn how to develop a schedule that works for them and their families.

Grade-Level Appropriate Learning Materials

Virtual schooling provides grade-level appropriate learning materials. There is a curriculum prepared for your student to meet their educational needs. This is one of the main differences between homeschool vs. online school. Since certified teachers have prepared the lessons, you don’t have to worry about lessons being too challenging or not challenging enough. In their online schooling, students will receive lessons that are appropriate for their age.

If you’re thinking of making the move from homeschool to online public school, be sure to do your homework and have a plan. With so many different online schools, you want to see that the teachers are certified, and the school is accredited. If you’re unsure about making the leap, talk to some other parents and students who have to get a better idea if it’s the right move for you and your student.

E-guide for Connections Academy with a green background and a graphic of a laptop with the purple eGuide.

Ready to Learn More

About Connections Academy?

Explore the benefits of attending Connections Academy, a tuition-free, accredited online public school that’s passionate about helping your child thrive.  

Get Your Free eGuide


Related Posts