Teaching Job

2015 Teacher and Support Staff Person of the Year

By on February 19th, 2015

TOY
Earlier this month, FLVS President and CEO Ronald Blocker announced our new FLVS Teacher of the Year and recognized our School-Related Employee of the Year.

The 2015-16 Macy’s Teacher of the Year for FLVS is Spanish teacher Ms. Caroline Jacobson. Jacobson currently teaches Spanish 2 and 3 and is helping to develop our new Spanish 4 course that will roll out in the Spring.

Suzette Soldate, Human Resources Executive Assistant, is our 2015 School-Related Employee of the Year. Soldate has been with FLVS for three years and serves the Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and Executive Director of Talent Management.   Continue reading


Give Thanks for Teachers

By on November 25th, 2014

teacher thanksgiving coverSchool is out this week in celebration of Thanksgiving, which seems appropriate, because this year I am most thankful for teachers. If there is a teacher at your pilgrim celebration, please let them have the biggest drumstick, the last piece of pumpkin pie, or the preferred napping spot in front of the football game. This year, more than ever, they have earned it.

Education is in a cycle of dramatic change (thankfully) but in lieu of a better system, traditional schools are placing more burdens on classroom teachers. Administrators add accountability metrics, but take away autonomy. Districts add high stakes testing, but take away class time for teaching. States add new standards, demand new teaching methods, and require new paperwork, while reducing budgets, salaries, and benefits. Not exactly what most teachers signed up for.  Continue reading


Instructional Coaching the FLVS Way

By on April 1st, 2014

instructional coachingHow does instructional coaching work in a virtual world?  Have you heard about the Vir-structional coaching program at FLVS?

The Vir-structional program is designed to help those using a virtual platform to train, teach, and inform participants.  The goal of the Coaching Program is to deliver high quality technology-based education by increasing customer/student learning through engaging and interactive live lessons.

Instructional coaching provides a venue for instructors to share teaching ideas and strategies with each other. The coach is someone who has expertise and knowledge in developing highly effective and engaging lessons that will lead to increased participant learning. The coachee is someone who would benefit from a coaching relationship by being open and receptive to learning new tools, techniques, and strategies to increase participants’ attendance and understanding. Continue reading


Finding Work Life Balance

By on January 23rd, 2014

work-life balanceAlmost a year into my career at FLVS, I would consider myself a work-life balance guru. That has not always been the case.

When I first came to FLVS in early 2013, I had no idea how important work-life balance would become. Coming from a brick-and-mortar school, I was used to working hard for eight hours a day and then walking away from my work once I left to get my daughter from daycare. Imagine my shock when I transitioned to virtual education where the work followed me everywhere.

The phone rang often, even after hours. My gradebook was never empty. At times, my VSA data and student numbers felt overwhelming. Sometimes I felt like the work was overtaking me and that it was overtaking every aspect of my life. And worse, I felt like I was not able to put the students’ needs first since I was so overwhelmed. Continue reading


A Good, Firm Handshake in a Virtual World

By on November 15th, 2013

We live in an ever-changing digital age where our interactions have become increasingly more “virtual” than face-to-face.

Today, most companies are turning to phone conference or webcam interviews to save time and money for incessantly busy Hiring Managers.  Job candidates are expected to answer complicated behavior based interview questions, supplying well-thought-out responses, all while making it perfectly clear why he/she is the right person for the job, often in 30 minutes or less.  So, how do you leave a lasting impression at the end of a phone interview?  You develop a good, firm virtual handshake. Continue reading


What an FLVS Teacher Does

By on May 6th, 2013

Pictured: FLVS Chinese Instructor, May H.

Pictured: FLVS Chinese Instructor, May H.

“What do you do for a living?”

I am asked this question, I am sure like many of you, many times a week. After I give my response, on occasion I get a puzzled look with the question, “How do you make those connections like they do in the traditional classroom?”

Let’s imagine you are arriving to the most posh and plush resort in the world. You have seen it on television, on the web, or perhaps in person. You arrive and you feel lighter in your feet, the smell of the hotel reminds you of the succulent aroma of spa salts, and you are greeted with your favorite beverage adorned with a drink umbrella. Continue reading


Leap of Faith

By on March 14th, 2013

Leap of FaithThere is a reason that I am at Florida Virtual School (FLVS) – my aunt made me take a leap of faith. In 1997, a friend interviewed for Florida High School, an early name for FLVS. When she came back from the interview, she said, “You need to go interview – this is made for you.” So, I went to meet with Julie Young and heard about the plans for this radical new thing called a virtual school.

After being offered a position, I went home and agonized all night. I had a nice teaching job where I knew what was going to happen tomorrow, and I had a pretty good idea what was going to happen next year and the following. This was radical – no one in the country was trying to create a public virtual school. It could fail before it even started. Continue reading