Online schools have been growing in popularity for years. While some people were skeptical of their legitimacy at first, they have proven to be a great addition to the vast educational opportunities available to students today. Online schools offer many benefits to both students and parents, and they truly set students up for success in whatever path they take after graduation.
Traditional schools can only offer classes for which they have the physical space. They also need local teachers to take on any courses. With online schooling, teachers can be located anywhere in the country, so long as they are certified in the state they’re teaching in, and physical classrooms cannot limit the course offerings. While all online schools will offer the traditional core classes to its students, they may also offer unique and interesting classes that not only foster a love of learning, but also give them access to a wealth of knowledge that they would not get at a traditional school. Students may take courses in unique subject areas that lead them to pursue jobs and careers in fields they wouldn’t have even known about otherwise.
The flexibility of online school is a huge benefit to those who enroll in one. Not only are students required to not show up anywhere physically, but they also cut out all the downtime between courses and maximize the most of their school time. Students who enroll in an online school can complete their assignments during the day, at night, or on weekends, and they can do schoolwork from anywhere with internet access. They are also able to set the pace for themselves, meaning they can do a little bit each day or spend time knocking out all their assignments well in advance of the deadlines. This flexible schedule gives our students a chance to participate in other beneficial activities that will help them in the future, such as a job, an internship, volunteer opportunities, athletics, or other extracurriculars.
Comfortable Work Environment
Not only do students get to work whenever they want, but online school also allows them to work wherever they want. They can do schoolwork on the couch, at the desk in their room, at the kitchen table, in a coffee shop, or at a nearby library. They can be in their pajamas, sitting outside, or curled up under a blanket. The comfortable and flexible work environment is a huge benefit to students because it improves their mental state and cuts down on stress and work time since they’re more at ease. Additionally, online schools promote positive learning environments so that every student feels welcomed and comfortable in class discussions and in their own educational journey.
Because of the flexibility of working anywhere and not being surrounded by other students, virtual learners tend to be more focused in their schoolwork. They know that once they’re done with an assignment they can move on to something else, and that motivates them to work hard and stay on task. There are fewer disruptions and distractions with at-home learning, particularly when students are intentional about keeping their workspace organized and completing their assignments in a timely manner. A typical assignment may take a student an hour to complete at a traditional school, but due to the lack of distractions and the more intense focus, students in an online school are likely to complete it much faster.
Many parents worry about the lack of social interaction that is often attributed to online schools. However, most online schools are extremely intentional about their student interaction that they far exceed traditional schools in peer collaboration and discussion-based learning. Online schools are all about students responding to and discussing ideas, so virtual learners tend to have more educationally-focused interactive opportunities with their peers than students in traditional schools. Teamwork, collaboration, and mutually-beneficial discussions are an extremely important part of online schools, which gives students more experience working with others that will benefit them after their schooling years.
More Soft Skills
One of the biggest predictors of a student’s success in life is not their academic skills, but their social skills and their executive skills. Online schools foster growth in both of these areas, giving students ample opportunities to learn, practice, and master these important skills that are vital to their future success, both personally and professionally. Our students learn more of these “soft” skills than students in traditional schools, primarily because they are given more personal responsibility when it comes to their academic experience. These skills include things like time management, open-mindedness, self-discipline, personal responsibility, critical thinking, self-motivation, problem-solving, organization, self-control, and independence. All of these skills are extremely important when it comes to the real world and life beyond school. Most employers would rather have employees who have these soft skills than those who have the technical abilities needed to do a particular job. Technical skills are trainable, but these soft skills are harder to acquire once students leave school. Online schools focus a great deal on fine-tuning students’ soft skills so that they are better equipped to handle life after graduation.
As you can see, online schooling gives you a great deal of advantages both during school and after graduation. If you’re interested in learning more about virtual learning, get in touch with San Diego Virtual School today. Our middle school and high school programs are fully accredited, nationally recognized, and exceptionally beneficial to both students and parents.