Hutto ISD in Central Texas will begin offering a new virtual program for its secondary students. Starting next school year, some students in grades 6 – 12 will be able to learn from home instead of in the classroom.
River Horse Academy began as a way for some students to work at an accelerated pace and graduate ahead of their class, but now it will expand to include those who need to catch up on their credits. Currently, students in this program work on these electronic courses while on campus, but next year the virtual option will include the ability to work remotely from home.
It will be especially helpful for those who have unique circumstances that make virtual school a better fit for their life, and thus increase their chance at academic success and completion. Many students struggle with needing to help their families by working and contributing income or by helping with caretaking. A traditional school schedule and routine doesn’t mesh well with these kinds of daily responsibilities.
There will be requirements for the virtual academy, and students will need to apply.
It’s high time that districts began embracing innovative and flexible options to help kids succeed in school. The pandemic taught us that there are multiple ways to do things—some better than others—and what’s traditional isn’t always what’s best for everyone. Modern public education needs to evolve to better serve all kids, and this is an example of a great start.
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