An ideal way to take summer classes is Florida Virtual School. With a relaxed schedule and no enrollment deadlines, students can begin and complete classes at their own pace.

“[A benefit of FLVS is] you can manage your time more wisely; you don’t have to follow a strict schedule like regular school,” sophomore Shutong Zhang said.

FLVS offers a way to fill a hole in a schedule, receive grade forgiveness or to get ahead.  FLVS is a fully accredited high school and is free for Florida residents.  It offers regular, honors and advanced placement courses, and each student is assigned a teacher who can be contacted through phone and e-mail.

A half semester class on a standard schedule, roughly three to five hours a week of class, can be finished in 16 to 18 weeks. This is the same amount of time it takes to finish a course taken in a regular classroom setting.  However, a course can be finished faster if the student chooses to do so.

“[Virtual school] may be even easier [than a regular class] because you can go ahead and go on to the next assignments,” Guidance Counselor James Caperton said.

A class commonly taken over the summer is economics. To graduate, seniors must take a half credit of both United States government and  economics. Seniors can choose to take United States government and economics for one semester each,  or take Advanced Placement United States government for a year and one semester of economics.  For this reason, seniors see Economics as a good course to take online and a way to pursue late arrival or early release options.

“I took economics [online] because I wanted to get ahead, and I didn’t want to worry about it during school,” senior David Ballard said.

A student taking a course through FLVS needs to be self-motivated to see good results because completing work lies largely on the student’s shoulders and there is less teacher produced pressure on them to complete it.  According to Caperton, the class of 2014 will be required to take an online class to help prepare them for any online courses they may take in college.

Zhang has taken four classes through FLVS and plans to take more.  Zhang has taken Chinese II, Drivers Education and Spanish I and II.

“[I would recommend it to other people] especially if they want to get a head start or if they’re the type of person who likes to work by themselves,” Zhang said.

FLVS is an opportunity to make room for more classes, to have less of a work load next year, or even to graduate early.  FLVS is a constructive way to spend one’s summer.

By admin

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