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Suburban Schools Considering Online Charter School Program

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(CBS) – Eighteen suburban school districts will be deciding in the not-too-distant future whether to contract with an online school district that’s starting up in the Fox River Valley.

Eight of the districts have public hearings next Monday to discuss whether to offer their students an opportunity to enroll in the Illinois Virtual Charter School.

It’s a kindergarten through senior year high school online school.

Board president Sharnell Jackson says students who might benefit from a “virtual school” include, “Students with learning disabilities or learning styles incompatible with the traditional classroom. Children with health issues….who are living or traveling internationally…or who move frequently.”

She also says students who have social or discipline issues or who have health problems or have been bullied might want to go to an online school.

Jackson expects 650 to 13-hundred students the school’s first year in the Fox River Valley.

Jackson says, even though an online class might have been recorded, “each student gets individual attention from the teacher.” She says there are so-called “whiteboard” sessions the teachers have in which students can interact with teachers.

She says the online school has a team approach to learning with, “The parent is the “learning coach” and works closely with the classroom teacher as well as the paraprofessionals who are assigned to each and every student.”

While Jackson says she and four other board members act as the governing body for the school, she says the company K12 would actually operate the school–providing lessons, teachers, and materials.

As far as socialization of children, she says there are a variety of in-person clubs and social events available.

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