My sophomore year of public high school, I felt stuck. During this time I realized many things, and one of them was my passion. However, my school day wouldn't allow it.
I spent seven hours in school, and five hours after that training at my dance studio, only to go home and complete several hours of homework. It taught me time management, it taught me dedication, but it still didn't allow me to pursue what I truly wanted.
Junior year, I made the switch to online school through VLACS. It was the absolute best decision I could have made at the time: it truly changed my life. Though I still had about 5-6 hours of work to do during the average weekday, my schedule was much more flexible and allowed me to focus more on my dance training and pursue my life goals: helping others and inspiring change. I was able to become a staff writer for Affinity Magazine, write for Step-Up magazine, start an environmentalist group in my area, volunteer and fundraise with NH for Humanity, and do this all while keeping up with schoolwork and maintaining my role as an honors student.
Online school ultimately bridged the gap between me living my life as a high school student who desired to pursue dance professionally, to a high school student living her life in pursuit of her passion. All the teachers I've had a pleasure of working with have been attentive, engaged in anything I need help with, and truly cared about my learning experiences: inside and outside of the classroom. The course options through VLACS are extensive, and the courses I have taken were engaging and exactly as I would have taken in my public school.
Though this is only my story, I know students who have succeeded through blended learning opportunities for many reasons: health-related issues, having a pace that works better for them, receiving their Associate's degree early, and so much more. I believe learning should be individual, just as we are individual, and online school truly allows for that to happen.
Virtual Learning Academy
University of the Arts