Here are the answers to some of our most Frequently Asked Questions:
Why was eLearn21 created?
eLearn21 was created to address the need in Pennsylvania for a challenging and flexible education option for students who want or need something different from traditional high schools but don’t want to enroll in a full-time cyber charter school.
Will I earn a High School diploma?
Yes, your student will earn a diploma from your home school district if all district policies are followed.
My child has special needs, a disability, or is an English Language Learner. Will eLearn21 be able to accommodate these students?
Many students with special needs seek out eLearn21 because of the flexibility, adaptation, and individualized program we can offer. Your local school’s Certified Special Education staff collaborate with students, families, and other instructors to develop the student’s IEP and create a learning plan that meets the student’s needs. If you have specific questions about accommodations, please contact your student’s Guidance Counselor to set up an appointment.
Will textbooks be provided?
Yes, with the exception of Advanced Placement courses, each course includes a customized PDF textbook, which can be printed or used on the computer depending on the student’s preference. Additional text materials may be needed for some classes.
How do students do lab work for Science courses?
Labs are performed in a flash-based virtual environment where students can easily experience the concepts and extend their exploration beyond the lesson.
How do students meet Physical Education requirements?
Physical Education has two components, learning about health and fitness concepts, as well as the necessary components for a healthy lifestyle, and by doing actual physical activity. Full-time cyber students will learn the concepts in online classes and will perform physical activities which they will record in a fitness journal.
How will my student interact with and be supported by the staff at eLearn21?
The key to a student’s academic success at eLearn21 (other than the student themselves, of course!) is the student’s mentor. The mentor’s primary goal is to make sure each one of his/her students is making progress and meeting or exceeding their academic goals. If the mentor sees anything getting off track, it will be addressed immediately with the student, parent, and instructors as necessary. Students are also supported by Graders, Live Instructors, and Tutors who help to instruct the students and give feedback on performance.
Are your teachers certified?
Yes, all Online Instructional Staff are Pennsylvania certified and highly qualified, if appropriate, to teach their subjects.
How do you prevent cheating and how do you know that students are staying on task?
With our proprietary user tracking software, we can see exactly which contents of lessons were accessed and for how long. Analysis of this data can help to ensure students are using the content properly. Also, our software tracks scores from daily assessments, which allows mentors and parents to know immediately if students truly understand the material. A combination of multiple choice testing and more creative assignments also help to ensure that students are submitting their own work and are understanding the material properly. Some districts may also require the students to take their exams in the school building while being proctored by a school staff person.
How does eLearn21 report academic progress?
Progress is tracked and reported in several ways. On their homepage, students, parents, and Instructional Staff can easily see grades, incomplete assignments, and achievement alerts (when a student falls behind in a given content area). Progress is also discussed between the family and the mentor regularly to ensure that students are achieving their learning goals.
What if my child is falling behind?
At eLearn21, daily assessment means that students, parents, mentors, and instructors know immediately when a student falls behind. If a student fails to meet proficiency in a given area, an alert is automatically sent to the student and mentor and is viewable by parents and instructors. The mentor will work with the student, parents, and instructors to determine the cause of the issue and assign an appropriate course of action to correct it immediately. When a student falls behind in grades or completion of assignments, students, parents, and instructors can see this immediately from their homepage and act to solve the issue.
What is the expected role of parents?
At eLearn21, we equip parents to guide, motivate, and monitor their child’s progress and make it easy to take an active role by staying informed about the curriculum and student achievement. With our Parent Portal, each parent receives a log-in which gives them access to all of the relevant information about their child’s education from a single homepage. Parents at eLearn21 are not required to provide instruction or tutoring, as they are in some other online programs.
What does eLearn21 do to make sure full-time cyber students are prepared for college?
In addition to meeting minimum graduation requirements, students will be encouraged to pursue a college preparatory education. Career and college counseling will be offered to students through your local school district.
How does eLearn21 support gifted and talented students?
eLearn21 is excellent for gifted students because it offers the ability for these students to move through material at an accelerated pace, attempt more difficult coursework, and gives opportunities for students to extend their learning with additional projects. eLearn21 is also able to offer access to challenging courses that may not be available at your local school district.
Does eLearn21 offer Honors and AP Courses?
eLearn21 courses are rigorous and include several Honors level courses. AP courses are also available.
Are students required to take standardized tests?
Yes, all students will be required to take the same state-mandated exams through your local school district
Is eLearn21 the same as Home Schooling?
No, eLearn21 is not Home School. These are online courses are accessed through eLearn21.
Will there be opportunities for socialization and extracurricular activities?
Students taking online courses remain enrolled in their local school, so they are eligible to participate in social and extracurricular activities in accordance with local school district policies.
What technology do I need?
Part-time eLearn21 students will need to provide their own computer and Internet access. Full-time eLearn21 students will be provided everything they need to participate in the school. Each full-time student will be loaned a laptop computer, with all of the software needed, and a printer/scanner. Students will need access to high speed Internet. eLearn21 will reimburse full-time cyber student families for Internet services according to our Internet policies.
What computer skills do students need?
It is expected that students will have basic computer skills, such as knowledge of Internet navigation, word processing, and email; however, if students need extra assistance in these areas, it can be provided. Training will be provided to all students and parents in the use of the eLearn21 software systems prior to the start of classes.
What if I want to use my own computer?
eLearn21 courses can be accessed from any computer. School-issued computers are equipped with software to protect your child’s safety while he/she is online. Students who choose to use their own computer will not be able to use technical support services offered through the school.
Do you cover the cost of Internet?
All students enrolled in eLearn21 must have access to a high speed Internet connection. eLearn21 will only reimburse full-time cyber student families up to $30 per month for Internet services according to our Internet policies. Families will need to set up service and installation on their own.
How do you protect the safety of my child online?
If your student is issued a laptop from the local school district, it will include protection software, which limits sites that students can access on the Internet and what can be downloaded to their computer. In the online community, student activity will be closely monitored by instructors to ensure that no inappropriate content is posted.
Who can enroll?
eLearn21 courses are available through your local school district; however, the district must be an eLearn21 member.
When should I enroll?
eLearn21 operates on a similar timeline to traditional high schools. Enrollment for the fall semester takes place in the spring and summer prior.
Can I enroll midyear?
Depending on local school district policy, eLearn21 enrolls students year-round. The student will meet with his/her Guidance Counselor, who will work with the family to create a personal learning plan for the student which allows them to begin classes as quickly as possible.
Can I enroll part-time or full-time?
Depending on local school district policy, students may take some or all of their courses online.
How many classes does a full-time student need to take at once?
Local school district policy will determine the minimum course enrollment for full-time status.
Can I purchase eLearn21 courses as a supplement to my child’s current education without enrolling through my local school district?
We do not currently offer individual families the ability to purchase courses directly from eLearn21.
Is there a cost?
eLearn21 course fees are paid for by your local school district. There is no tuition.