Your thoughts? Positives, negatives; what am I missing here?
Thanks so much!
DD 9 DS 7 yrs
You might also search out "virtual" school/schools and Connections Academy (similar to K12, but uses Calvert).
We are beginning 3rd grade with K12 this year. It is our first year outside of a brick & mortar public school. So far, the K12 materials look great and we are ready to jump in!
So far in my research, I've found mixed reviews. Very structured, very tied to the public school system, not as flexible as most HS options. A couple of good articles for thought.
My kids are starting out in a local Christian preschool, half days, but I'm researching what to do as they get older . . .
DD 9 DS 7 yrs
I decided to go for it this year and signed up under the school district in the area with good reviews from other parents.
For example, one school district wants you to mark hrs spent teaching where another one just has you mark that you did "something" that day.
K12 is a corporation selling their curriculum to school districts that have charter set ups. Since your property taxes pay for your child's school K12 gets the portion that would normally go to a brick and mortar school. That is why your courses are free. It is a substitution, under charter schools, for the brick and mortar school that your child would otherwise attend. I used K12 Hoosier Academy two years ago and it was great. This year has been a total nightmare. They have a completely new system with very poor design and lots of glitches. It took forever to get registered and I believe that was, in part, because the staff at Hoosier are not familiar with these changes. Until they get through a check list you can not have access to the teachers' list or even the Help function, which I think is absurd. When my student started going through her "Welcome to online.." session she was reading how to set up and input attendance and if she had more than one student.....It was obvious this was for the coach. If I tried to go into the session, because it was on her planner, I don't have a planner, it warned me that the student should be signing in. In going through the daily Coach workbooks it is obvious that words are missing. For example, "Review with your the thought given...."
I will never again recommend K12. The child has to do about 11 hours a day in order to get caught up when registration is delayed. The Coach is now required to almost sit beside the student to constantly put in their password so that the student can continue. I HATE IT!
I was considering signing my kids up for K12 this year because my oldest two are starting high school and I was really nervous about doing it "right." Turns out we are not eligible, because in Texas you have to have attended public school the previous year. Personally, I think that's crap. You can't sign up for public school because you aren't already in public school? The Texas Home School Coalition agrees, but they haven't been able to get it changed.
Oh well. We're using Switched on Schoolhouse again this year. I don't love everything about it, but it does make me feel like I can be sure everything is getting covered.
Wow, interesting requirement, michelle. That's a head-scratcher. What are they thinking?
I just wanted to chime in to add that K12 is indeed a corporation that sells curriculum and services to schools. So charter schools make their own policies and use K12 as their platform for "delivery," for lack of a better term.
Personally, from what I have seen, most parents having issues actually seem to be having trouble with their schools' policies. Their schools are entities other than K12, and the policies are usually agreed upon locally. Sometimes there are typos in materials, but honestly I have had issues in the past with materials my kids brought home from PS, too. Grammar issues in particular. These are everywhere--I'm often bothered by the same thing when reading mass-market novels or nonfiction.
K12 has its own private schools in addition to its products used by charters. We use a private international school, and have not had any issues with policies or expectations. We all have easy access and a lot of contact with teachers, regular check-ins every other week for my elementary student and monthly teacher check-ins for my middle schooler, online classes my kids actually like to attend, and other opportunities to engage as an online community. It's not perfect. We live abroad most of the year and sometimes it's hard to attend classes when we're 10 time zones away. Or, common household items available in the States can be harder to come by in other countries, making science or art more challenging. Or our internet service is interrupted.
It's also a far cry from a hands-off approach. It's definitely not homeschool, but it's definitely nothing like B&M. For me, since we are approaching school very much one year at a time, and my kids both want to return to PS eventually (at least that is what they say today), this is what works for us. I know my kids will ease back into a classroom if they have to in the future.
Hmm...I'm using the K12 curriculum through a public charter and still feel very much like I am homeschooling. I've actually been pleasantly surprised at the amount of work that is done off the computer. Yes, there are more worksheets than I would find to be ideal, but I also haven't been pressured to have dd complete ever single one so long as she is getting the concept, and I really only have to turn an assignment in/meet with the teacher (virtually) once a month or so. My dd is in first grade.
I don't love everything about it, but that is more a style issue than anything I think-neither dd nor I are great at a strict routine, so I'm learning what I can bend and move around to make it flow better for us (i.e. they had scheduled the base subjects plus 2 extras each day, like history and art or science and music, but I moved the schedule around so we just do 2 "units" of each special one day a week so there are less transitions from subject to subject. Already a huge improvement for us.)
I was at a place this year that I really *needed* a set curriculum though-in an ideal world, I'd be an unschooler, but right now it just isn't feasible for various reasons.