of Waving Goodbye to a Brick & Mortar School before reading this penultimate article of the series following the decision, enrollment, highs and lows of leaving regular public school and attending a virtual online school from home.
So here we are, the new school year is underway and our year experiment with the Florida Virtual School is over.
Sometimes I cannot believe we did this, I’m usually so main stream and a little conservative so to do something that a few years ago I would have considered a bit of a ‘hippie’ thing to do, has made me giggle at my self quite a bit.
Of course, when I was not giggling I was tearing my hair out or banging my head against my desk but all in all the results speak for themselves.
So let’s remind ourselves what we did, why and the conditions:
We enrolled Nally in Florida Virtual School to manage her own education from home, using all the great tools and curriculum provided by the FLVS, because she was seriously unhappy in mainstream school and her grades were even sadder.
I am very proud to let you know that Nally finished the year with straight A’s. The highest grades she has ever attained and had maintained them for the majority of the year. She graduated 9th grade, but really as Florida has not held anyone back since the 50’s that was a bit of a gimme, but I was happy with her performance and that’s the main thing in this house!
She passed her end of year exams but some of them were quite surprisingly a bit of a “scrape through by the seat of her pants”. I’ve done all the, ‘first year of a new exam’, and ‘she’s just not good at tests’, justifications in my head but the bottom line is, she needs to get better at exams. They are a fact of life and there are times when you just need to perform under pressure. We went from too much test pressure at a brick & mortar school, to not enough emphasis at a virtual school!
With regards to points 3 and 4, during Part Four of this series Nally confessed to not having reached her goal of getting a job, volunteering or finding an activity to keep herself active and socialized.
However, since that confession she has turned everything around and joined the Navy Sea Cadets with a view to her long term goal of joining the Marines or the Navy. It is active, regimented, brings her into contact with people from all walks of life and has a great volunteer program as the Cadets regularly go out into the community to help with all sorts of things. This together with her chores and all of our crazy projects at the new house is keeping her busy and fit.
So the experiment may be over but our life with FLVS is not. Today is the first day of 10th grade and just like last year, nothing worked, their servers crashed, she can’t access any lessons and we keep having to reboot and reload the software. Except that we’re old hands now and we’re just not worrying about it, we know it will be okay.