I entered my local high school feeling like just a number in a sea of other numbers of students. Hope for a better high school experience diminished the first week with my locker being glued shut and my needing to rearrange schedules to avoid bullies. My car was vandalized as well. Bullying was a major issue that I faced—that is, until I switched to an online school. Blended learning allowed me to take advantage of the best of two worlds. I was able to take classes at my local school and stay connected with my local community and friends. However, blended learning allowed me to attend the classes I wanted locally and, to literally leave the negative elements of that school behind each day.
The local high school that I was assigned to attend has over 1500 students enrolled. Getting into desired classes is hard. My programming classes were always full or unavailable with my schedule. English teachers were good but instruction was often focused on disciplining ill-mannered classmates.
My situation allows me to compare both environments. Online, I prepared and gave nine speeches while my friends at the brick and mortar high school gave four speeches. In my opinion, online classes were academically geared at getting through the coursework material. The online support was always timely, helpful and friendly.
I went from being a student hating school and no longer caring about my academic scores to a thriving high school senior who has acquired the Minnesota Honors Society Award. I intend to get a degree in law enforcement and a computer degree in IT security. I am so thankful I was able to choose challenging classes online and end my high school experience on a positive note.
Minnesota Virtual Academy
Rochester Community and Technical College