What grades are offered by the Utah Virtual Academy?
The Utah Virtual Academy offers full-time enrollment for grades K-12. Through the Public Education Online option, individual, tuition-free online courses are also available to any Utah high school student, statewide, who is currently attending either a public school within his or her resident district, a private school, or a state-approved charter school. Students who are home schooled may also enroll.
What subjects will my child study?
Language Arts, Math, Science, History, Art, Music, and Physical Education are the core courses. High school students also take a world language course, and have access to AP(r) courses as well. World languages are also offered to K-8 students as an extracurricular activity. Visit our k-8 online courses and high school online courses section.
Does the program provide textbooks and other instructional materials?
Yes, we provide all the textbooks and instructional materials that are needed to complete the program. These books and materials are sent to students directly. Full- and part-time high school students receive fewer books and materials than elementary and middle school students.
Will my child have the same graduation opportunities as students in traditional public schools?
Yes, we are a public school in Utah, so students can earn a diploma issued by the Utah Office of Education based upon successful completion and mastery of course content. High school students seeking part-time enrollment will receive a transcript upon successful completion of each course.
Can my child work at his or her own pace?
The online K-8 program is self-paced and flexible within the parameters specified by state law. The online high school program is a combination of self-paced work and scheduled lessons and activities.
What happens if my K-8 student completes a course mid-year?
When a student completes a course, the Utah Virtual Academy will send him or her to the next level up until March 31 of any school year. After April 1, courses cannot be ordered again until the next fall. Teachers work closely with students to help pace the curriculum to meet the student's goals for advancement.
If a K-8 student enrolls mid-year, does he or she start partway through a course?
No. Our placement tests indicate which course the student should start in, and he or she begins with the first lesson, even if it is February. Teachers pro-rate progress goals for the school year to measure appropriate growth during the time the student was enrolled. If the student reaches the last day of the school year and has not completed a course, he or she may work on it in the summer and/or pick up with the next lesson on the first day of school in the fall.
How much time do students spend on the computer?
We expect that students will spend no more than 20 to 25 percent of their time on the computer in the early grades. We believe in a balanced approach toward education. Computers help us provide you with effective assessment, planning, and time-management tools. Computers also act as powerful teaching tools that can motivate, stimulate, and inform children about the world around them. Computers do not, however, replace a solid education. Rather, they help facilitate one. That's why we use a unique multimedia approach that also includes a great deal of old-fashioned books, workbooks, and instructional materials. At the high-school level, students will spend nearly their entire school day online.
Do you provide curriculum for special needs children?
Depending on a child's IEP, we can tailor our curriculum to meet your needs. To discuss your child's needs with us, please contact our office, and we will put you in touch with our special education team.
School districts and charter schools are required by Utah law, 53A1a-704(10), to inform parents of students with IEPs enrolled in public schools, of the availability of a scholarship to attend a private school through the Carson Smith Scholarship Program. More information can be found on the Utah State Office of Education website.
Can you accommodate the accelerated learning needs of my gifted/talented child?
The beauty of our K-8 program is that it is flexible enough to meet children where they are in any given subject and take them where they want to go. Placement assessments taken online during the enrollment process allow us to place your student in the appropriate level of curriculum. So, for example, if your fourth grader is doing math on a sixth-grade level and reading on a fourth-grade level, we can tailor your curriculum and lesson plans to meet his or her abilities. High school students have the opportunity to make more advanced courses, including AP courses for college credit. Visit our gifted and talented student section.
How do students interact socially?
Throughout the year, students are invited to participate in school outings, field trips (e.g., to historical sites, museums, zoos), picnics, and other social events. We expect local clusters of students and parents to get together on a regular basis in their areas. We also are exploring new ways to interact socially using the powerful reach of the Internet. The online Family Directory provides a way for families to network with families in their region of the state. With online discussions and forums, new types of communities can be formed that are based not on geography and place but on shared interests.
Will this program intrude into my home?
There are no home visits as part of the program, unless you ask your teacher to come to your home (completely optional), and there are no cameras or any other intrusions into your home. This school was created to help your child obtain a first-class education and serve your family's needs. If you ever feel that it is not right for your family or your child, you can withdraw at any time.
How do I enroll my student?
Visit our How to Enroll in UTVA section for information on enrolling your student in the Utah Virtual Academy.
Can students do extracurricular activities in their resident district?
There is a new state law in Utah that allows charter school students to participate in district extracurricular activities. Districts may charge charter school students a participation fee. Part-time high school students may participate in the full scope of their resident district or charter school's offering.