Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can I be denied enrollment into the Virtual Academy?
- Yes. Suspended or Expelled students from other districts are not permitted to enroll.
- Yes. A district may deny enrollment if the pupil does not possess the prerequisite knowledge and skills to be successful in the online course or is not proficient in the subject area. Our school determines whether or not the student has the skills to be successful through NWEA testing and technology proficiency.
If a student graduates from the Virtual Academy will they actually receive a true Berrien Springs diploma?
Students receive a fully endorsed Michigan Merit Curriculum diploma so long as they take the required state exam and complete the graduation credit track.
Are there textbooks that go along with the curriculum?
Elementary students receive "school in a box." Books, workbooks, lab supplies, and manipulates are delivered. The computer is used for tests and work submission.
Secondary students curriculum is online but supplemented with books, hands on labs, workshops, and face to face tutoring.
Does my student have to take all the classes online?
No, your student can take a mix of online and on-campus classes. This program is about choice and flexibility for parents and students.
Does my student have to ever physically be on campus?
Yes. We believe face-to-face interaction is still important. We require occasional attendance for the purpose of orientation, writers workshops, labs, tutoring, coaching, and standardized testing. Schedules are provided once at the beginning of the year and at the start of each semester for planning purposes. New 6-12th grade students must attend school for the first two weeks with an interview at the conclusion to determine a unique attendance policy for each student.
Is there a minimum amount of time the student must be online for the program?
We require the students to work actively online for 5 hours per day per class or a minimum of 35 hours per week for a full-time student. This is equivalent to taking classes on-campus.
If a student is having some problems in a subject area, is there help available?
A highly qualified, certified teacher is assigned to each course and will not only grade and provide feedback, but will also create assignments designed to have students collaborate with each other.
Approximately how long does it take to complete one course?
Each class is measured so that it would take one full year to complete for full credit courses. Half credit courses take a semester to complete.
Is a Virtual Academy student eligible to try out for a Berrien Springs High School sports team, i.e., the baseball team, basketball team, etc..?
Unfortunately we are currently unable to offer sports participation to our full-time students. However, we do offer participation in many of our non-athletic extracurricular programs such as robotics, music, drama, and various clubs.