In order to earn a high-quality online high school diploma, you should choose the best online high school that fits your needs.
In the state of Virginia, there are two reputable online high schools – Oak Meadow and K12 International Academy. Please continue reading and I will show you the benefits of these two schools.
Basic knowledge for accreditation
It is common knowledge that online schools should be accredited by one of the six regional accrediting agencies. With the authoritative accreditation, your diploma will be accepted widely across the country. Firstly, I will introduce the six accreditors to you:
• NEASC – New England Association of Schools and Colleges
• NCA – North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement
• MSA – Middle States Association of Schools and Colleges
• SACS – Southern Association of Schools and Colleges
• WASC – Western Association of Schools and Colleges
• NWCCU – Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
The agencies I listed above are all recognized by USDE and CHEA which also accredits other brick-and-mortar schools. The six agencies grant accreditation to schools in different states. Each agency is responsible for some states. Schools in Virginia State are accredited by SACS.
Oak Meadow School
Oak Meadow School, started in 1975, comes with an education philosophy that children are sensitive and intelligent, and learning should be enjoyable. With this philosophy, Oak Meadow has helped many homeschooling children for decades.
Oak Meadow is accredited by SACS who recognizes schools in Virginia. In addition, the other five agencies also grant accreditation to Oak Meadow.
When you make the decision of earning an online high school diploma at Oak Meadow, you have two options to reach your goal.
Option 1 – purchase the Oak Meadow curriculum
Option 2 – enroll in the distant learning school
If you choose the first option, you don’t need to enroll in the curriculum. You can purchase the curriculum by visiting http://www.oakmeadowbookstore.com/. The materials are described in detail at this website. This curriculum is designed for K-12 students to complete their 36 weekly lessons based on high academic standards.
Another benefit of the Option 1 is that you can use the materials at your own pace, which means that you have the right to arrange your learning plans including the assignments, activities and learning time. You can enjoy enough flexibility through this option. However, you have to register as a homeschooler with the Department of Education in your state by yourself and meet certain requirements. Besides, you should report your progress regularly to the Department of Education.
There is another drawback of this option. You may be lack of online guidance of teachers. So if you come across any difficult during your distant learning, you can visit the Homeschooling Support Service and get some help. And you can get teacher manuals and answer keys if you give their office a call.
Unlike Option 1, to select the second option, you should enroll in Oak Meadow’s accredited distance learning school. And for that reason, you as well as your parents can receive the professional assistance from an experienced teacher. Please don’t worry about the class size, since the amount is limited to 300.
The tuition fee of online high school is around $900 per course per student for a complete full year and $540 per course per student for a single semester. There are some discounts available to you. If your family has enrolled, you can enjoy a discount of 5% providing there is an additional sibling enrollment. And you can enjoy a discount of 10% suppose one of your parents is actively serving in military.
When you graduate high school with Oak Meadow, you can receive the accredited transcript and a diploma. Your transcript is accepted by other universities in the world. And there will be a graduation ceremony in order to celebrate your achievements.
K12 International Academy
K12 International Academy is recognized by two regional accrediting agencies – SACS and MSA. It is also approved by NCAA, United States Tennis Association Player Development and Virginia Council for Private Education.
K12 International Academy is characterized by individualized learning plan. The school will customize a unique learning strategy for you. During the learning process, you can communicate with other students worldwide online. Additionally, an experienced teacher is available to you in case that you have any problem. Thus you will not feel isolated.
There are three stages: Lower School, Middle School and Upper School. Among those, Upper School is designed for students from Grade 10 to Grade 12. You should reach the minimum credit requirement. For students in Grade 10, they should complete 6 cumulative credits; for those who are in Grade 11, they should finish 12 cumulative credits; and Grade 12 needs 18 cumulative credits.
Yet you can’t graduate from K12 International Academy with the minimum credits. In order to graduate successfully, you have to meet the following requirements as well:
• 4 credits for English
• 4 credits for Math
• 4 credits for Science (The subject of Biology must be selected)
• 4 credits for History or Social Science
• 2 credits for World Language
• 0.5 credits for Physical Education
• 5 credits for Electives
You have two options for your online learning – Full Time and Part Time. The tuition fee varies in line with different learning options. The annual tuition for Upper School is about $6,995 for Full Time option and $850 for Part Time option.
Semester tuition is not available to Lower School and Middle School. The semester tuition for Full Time students is $3,499 and $425 for Part Time students. You are entitled to enjoy 17 more benefits if you choose Full Time enrollment. There are only 4 benefits for Part Time enrollment.
You can also get sibling discounts, about 10% off tuition. In the event of discounts, I think Oak Meadow does better than K12 International Academy which provides discounts for those whose parents serve actively in military. Keep in mind that the registration fee of $200 should be paid if you are new enrolling students.