Online public schools are just like traditional schools in the sense that they: do not charge tuition; serve students in grades kindergarten through twelve; use state-certified or -licensed teachers; follow state requirements for standards and assessments; and result in a high school diploma upon completion.

Where online schooling differs from traditional school is in that:

  • Students receive an individualized education and personalized, one-to-one support.
  • Classes do not take place in a building but rather at home, on the road, or wherever an Internet connection can be found.
  • Students take courses online.
  • Parents and students communicate with their teacher via online classrooms, e-mail, and phone, (but also sometimes face-to-face).
  • These schools are full time, and follow a traditional school year. You can expect that your child will spend 5 to 6 hours per day on coursework and homework. But students are not always in front of a computer—they also work on offline activities, worksheets, and projects as part of the school day.