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Phone: (800) 382-6010
Grades Served: K-12
Approved as a Multidistrict Online Course Provider from the 2016-17 through the 2019-20 school year.
Connections Education® is an accredited provider of high-quality, highly accountable virtual education solutions for students in grade K–12. Mary M. Knight School District is contracting with Connections to provide curriculum, technology, and other services in compliance with Washington statute. Connections has extensive experience over the last 14+ years in online learning. Among the schools being supported by Connections in the 2015–2016 school year are 30 online public schools operating in 25 states and serving more than 60,000 students. The Connections program is an asynchronous model that uses synchronous support.
The Connections program is the first virtual school program to receive accreditation from the Commission on International and Trans-Regional Accreditation (CITA), now a part of AdvancED™. The program was first granted accreditation in 2005. In its most recent accreditation report in April 2015, AdvancED™ found that:
• “A culture and commitment focused on student learning permeates throughout the Connections Education organization.”
• “The corporation embodies a culture of collaboration that exists throughout all aspects of the corporation and schools.”
Connections Education is proud of the recognition of its focus on student learning and collaboration.
The curriculum and education management system have also been recognized nationally for quality and innovation. A list of awards is provided on the website at: http://www.connectionsacademy.com/results/awards
The Connections program includes: 1) a rigorous, proven curriculum aligned to the Washington Academic Standards, 2) Washington-certified teachers, and 3) an educational management system designed specifically for a K-12 online learning environment to provide accountability through comprehensive data collection, analysis, and reporting. Students will master the core subjects of reading/writing and communicating, mathematics, science, and social studies through a challenging, online curriculum and will be prepared to excel on assessments.
Connections will employ highly qualified, Washington-certified teachers, as required by law, specially trained in online delivery and personalized instruction. The majority of the teachers will work remotely delivering instruction to an online classroom of students and working one-on-one with students through highly interactive, technology-facilitated communication tools. Teachers will maintain a one-on-one relationship with each student.
Connections provides a full-time school experience with an online learning community that connects students, teachers, and families through unique technology tools as well as face-to-face interaction. In the early grades, the school will focus on creating strong parental involvement. In the later grades, each student will have a progression plan focused on career and college readiness. Beginning in grade 9, guidance counselors will work with each student individually on graduation plans with a focus on appropriate courses, credits, and post-secondary planning. Students at all grade levels will have the opportunity to participate in clubs, activities, and electives to complete the full-school experience.
Each year, we survey parents to get their feedback on the program and to help identify what we’re doing well and how we can improve. Parents evaluate Connections Academy on a number of criteria, including student progress, teacher support, quality of curriculum, and use of technology to improve the learning experience. This year, once again, parents gave us high marks for helping students succeed academically and emotionally. For example, over 96% of our parents praise the helpfulness of their child’s teacher and over 95% of our parents agree that our curriculum is high quality. For more details, go to http://www.connectionsacademy.com/results/parent-reviews
- Language Arts
- Social Studies
- World Languages
- Advanced Placement
- Credit Recovery
Students interested in a Connections program are diverse, come from a wide variety of backgrounds, and have many different reasons for choosing to enroll: they may be gifted and need a challenging curriculum; be struggling academically and need an individualized approach; be dealing with social, discipline, and other issues; or be elite athletes or performers who need flexible scheduling for education, or may simply wish to experience the flexibility and unique environment offered by an online school. Connections offers an extensive range of courses to meet all student needs, with Advanced Placement (AP) and Gifted and Talented courses available for advanced students, Foundations courses and a wide range of supplemental programs for students who need additional supports, and extensive electives including foreign language courses. .
Student-Teacher Contact Requirements
Connections has a set of standard requirements for student-teacher contacts as part of the “Core Model” of expectations for students and school staff. These policies and expectations are provided to stakeholders in several ways, including in the School Handbook and Handbook Supplement and the Core Standards for Facilitating Student Learning at Connections. A summary of student-teacher contact requirements is provided below.
Both students and Learning Coaches are required to have regular synchronous communications with their teachers. At a minimum, all students enrolled in Washington will interact (e.g., via phone, LiveLesson session, or face-to-face) with a teacher every week so the teacher is able to monitor academic progress and verify student learning. While weekly contacts are required, most students (and their parents, though parent/teacher contact may vary by grade level) will have daily contact with their teachers through a combination of phone calls, WebMail messages, LiveLesson sessions, discussion boards, and the review of assessments via the electronic Grade Book.
Student Performance and Demographics
Data for school year: 2014-2015
Teacher-to-student ratio: NA
Student Satisfaction Survey
Connections Education did not participate in the student satisfaction survey.