Online high schools in Virginia
Students have a number of choices for online high schools in Virginia. They can enroll in private, fee-based, online high schools or take advantage of the Web-based coursework offered by their school division or by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Virginia online high schools offered by individual school divisions
Virginia school divisions can enter into contracts with a variety of entities to offer full-time Virginia online high schools, online programs with supplemental instructions, and blended programs. The Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction approved 13 multi-division online providers that meet Virginia Board of Education criteria, according to a press release issued June 6, 2011. Public school students cannot be charged tuition for virtual courses offered in their school division although tuition can be charged for students who are not residents of the school division.
High-tech programs sponsored by the Commonwealth
Virtual Virginia is a state Department of Education program offering online courses with begin and end dates that match the official school year. Online classes are not self-paced but students do have some flexibility in meeting benchmark due dates. Private and home school students pay tuition of $500 per one-credit course or $300 per half-credit course, and they are responsible for purchasing required educational materials.
Public school students participating in the Virginia Early College Scholars, or ECS program, are not charged tuition. Public school students who are not in the ECS program have access to tuition-free core, elective and world language courses, but pay approximately $375 per Advanced Placement courses -- the amount is based on a formula for area of residence in the state. Online course materials are provided by the local school.
According to a Department of Education press release issued September 14, 2011, Virginia recently partnered with Microsoft to launch and implement the Microsoft IT Academy Program at all schools statewide; it is among the first states to do so. The program provides ongoing technology education to every high school student in Virginia.