If you ask me, there is nothing like the rush of sharing with our state legislators the unique ways FLVS serves Florida students, and it’s even better when students themselves get to share their stories.
On April 5, 2017, that’s exactly what happened in Tallahassee.
Florida Virtual School executives, board members, staff, parents, and students walked into the state Capitol with a mission.
It was FLVS Day at the Capitol and we wanted our state Senators and Representatives to know how important access to virtual education is for students of all ages. Right now, students in grades 2-5 wishing to take FLVS courses on a part-time basis have to meet a list of eligibility requirements, with the most problematic being that they must have been enrolled in a Florida public school the entire year prior.
House Bill 833 and Senate Bills 868 and 692 remove those eligibility requirements.
Passing these bills means FLVS Flex Elementary students can continue their education with FLVS, allowing them to learn from the hospital, abroad, and from home without restriction. Continue reading
Today is Digital Learning Day!
It’s a day when the whole nation celebrates all the wonderful benefits of online learning and digital literacy.
You know, everything from the cool and advanced technology of courses and anytime learning, to the digital literacy skills that online learning provides to strengthen a student’s learning experience.
This not only includes finding and learning from digital content, but also creating authentic digital content, and communicating or sharing it in multiple formats.
It also includes valuable soft-skills that today’s employers are asking for – like time management and being efficient in using online resources.
While we are thrilled to be celebrating today with other online learning providers, families, and students, we at FLVS have to admit that we celebrate this stuff everyday!
We can’t help it – our passion for online education comes from our awesome students and families who we serve. It doesn’t take long to see the difference we make in students’ lives, and get excited about what we can do next in order to keep our students thriving. Continue reading
2016 is an incredible time to be a teacher.
I am grateful for each and every day I get to work alongside the best of the best in education.
While expectations are high, standards seem impossible to meet, and the everyday trials and struggles we face seem endless, this time in our country and our world is truly an incredible time to be a teacher. We have so much more access to research about how and why we learn. We have clearer pictures of our brains and all they can accomplish.
We might be up against some very difficult mountains to climb, but the teachers that have gone before us have never been as well equipped as we are today.
As a teacher I’ve always been fascinated with the brain – how it operates so much more than just our physical bodies. Each and every day, new research is published confirming something I think teachers have always known. Continue reading
In August of 1981, the first personal computer was invented.
Selling for a whopping $1,565 (today’s price would be more than $7,000), it hardly had any of the high tech specifications that basic computers come with today.
It had an 11 ½ inch monitor (definitely not a touch-screen), a floppy disk drive (most people under the age of 25 have no idea what that even is), and offered a black and white screen. Now, imagine your students and children using this PC for homework. The World Wide Web doesn’t even show up until 1991, so they are very limited in what they can use the computer for.
Now, fast forward to November 2016. Continue reading
The other weekend, my mother was happy to come and watch my son as I tackled a few things that had been on my list for a while.
My “To Do” list consisted of starting a mortgage application, purchasing some “the best way to get your baby to sleep through the night” products and printing nearly 1,000 adorable photos of my now 7 month old.
She immediately scooped up her grandson when she arrived (you would too, he’s so cute!) and took off into the other room so he could show her his new trick of “almost crawling.”
Two hours later, she came out into the kitchen and was startled to see that I was still sitting there. Continue reading
If you’ve ever dreamed of traveling the world, it may not be as complicated as you think.
In 2008, Mike Cooney traveled the world with his wife, Catrell, and three teenage sons, Morgan, Zach, and Harrison, who studied online with FLVS. After selling their home, downsizing, and packing up their belongings, the family traveled across six continents and 22 countries…more than 61,000 miles! Today, Mike shares their experiences at speaking events and talks about his book which details their adventures. As Mike likes to say, “If we can do it, anyone can!”
In a year-long blog series on The Virtual Voice, Morgan, Zach, and Harrison and their parents shared their experience: Continue reading
This is the final post in a series by the Cooney family about their world travels, made possible by the flexible learning offered at FLVS.
For the past 12 months, my family and I have been recounting our trek around the world and sharing what it meant to each of us.
Although it’s been nearly seven years since we returned in September 2009, there is not a day that goes by we don’t think about what the trek meant to us individually and collectively. Needless to say, it was a life-changing experience for each of us. My wife Catrell and I set several goals before leaving on our trek and they were all met. Continue reading
This is the 11th post in a series by the Cooney family about their world travels, made possible by the flexible learning offered at FLVS.
Our around the world trek was accomplished in two stages.
The first lasted four months and we backpacked through Central and South America. After returning home for a short visit, we resumed our trek, which lasted seven months. During our odyssey, we traveled to six continents, visited 22 countries and covered more than 61,000 miles. Although we did circumnavigate the globe, the fact is we only traveled a narrow piece of geography.
No matter how well-traveled someone is, they tend to stay within the lines – back roads, hiking trails, plane routes and highways. We were no different. Through Central and South America, we traveled almost entirely by bus – from “chicken buses” packed with 30 people when there should have only been 15, to a luxury motor coach that had its equivalent of a flight attendant onboard. Continue reading
This is the tenth post in a series by the Cooney family about their world travels, made possible by the flexible learning offered at FLVS.
In most cases the pros outweigh the cons, which is why the number of options for online learning have exploded in recent years.
Whether someone is simply brushing up on basic skills, completing a Kindergarten-12 class or working on his or her PhD, online learning has become deeply rooted in our educational infrastructure.
Think online learning is too difficult for students with unique abilities and needs? Think again.
Florida Virtual School has been a proud provider in education for students with unique abilities and needs for many years. Our teachers are trained to work with students and help them succeed and the data is showing just that…success!
Let’s take a look at the State funded Personalized Learning Scholarship Accounts (PLSA) program, now known as the Gardiner Scholarship. It launched in fall 2014 and allows parents to personalize their child’s education based on the individual needs of each unique eligible child. The funds can be used for therapeutic resources, tuition, tutoring, and even virtual school. During the 2014-15 school year, FLVS had 215 successfully completed courses from students with a PLSA. Of these courses, 99 percent were completed with a grade of A B, or C. A special thanks to the legislature and Governor Scott for expanding this program effective July 2016 through SB 672.