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FAQ

What are the benefits of PVUSD Independent Study Virtual Academy?

  • Safety - Students and families not comfortable returning in person to the school site, have the comfort of knowing that instruction is 100% all online.

  • Flexibility - Students and families may create their own instructional time schedule so long as 20 hours of instruction time is completed each week. This benefits students who are employed, working families, and families who travel.

  • Individual Attention to Best Support Each Student - Students can move through the courses at their own pace. Acceleration courses as well as intervention courses will be offered. A Supervising Teacher, Counselor, and Technology Coordinator is available for each individual student.

  • College and Career Readiness - Allows students to take their education beyond the walls of the classroom and master key concepts as they progress through grade level content. Prepares students to become self-motivated learners.

Do Students Attend at a Physical School Site?

No. PVUSD Independent Study Virtual Academy is 100% online instruction. The program offers flexibility to students and families to complete the work from any location.

The "physical" school site is located in two portables on the Watsonville High School Campus.

What is the Instructional Schedule and What is a Supervising Teacher?

  • Students are assigned a PVUSD Certified Supervising Teacher. A PVUSD Certified Teacher who meets individually with each student and parent(s)/guardian(s) once a week (30-45 minutes) or more if needed to assist and support the students progress, review and collect work, review the student's Personalized Learning Plan (PLP), offer socio-emotional support as well as academic support.

  • Students must complete 20 hours a week of instruction; recommended 4 hours a day. All work is completed online. This is the link for instructional expectations - Weekly Virtual Coaching Session

  • Students complete the lesson modules independently during the 20 hour instructional week.

What is a Personalized Learning Plan?

A weekly scheduled agreement between the student, parent(s)/guardian(s) and Supervising Teacher. The PLP includes a daily time schedule for each subject area, the lesson modules that will be completed that week, a summary depicting what was learned/applied that week, and a select a focus group for the next week.

What is a Focus Groups?

Students may attend a focus group session with a PVUSD Certified Teacher each week. This is for academic advancement, academic intervention/support or socio-emotional learning.

What is the Curriculum?

For weekly independent lessons/modules, students will be using Florida Virtual School online courses using Buzz Learning Management System as well as additional digital interactive tools including Seesaw, Flipgrid, KAMI, Screencastify, Jamboard, Desmos, etc. The curriculum is Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accredited and the courses are Common Core Standards aligned as well as UC and NCAA approved. The optional weekly Focus Groups will provide Common Core College and Career Readiness Standards Project Based Learning lessons with a real-world application.

Are Accelerated Courses Offered?

Yes! All 6th-12th grade students will have access to accelerated math courses according to their academic level including Algebra I and II Honors, Probability and Statistics Honors, and AP Calculus AB/BC. Likewise, students have access to accelerated language arts courses including English I and II Honors, AP English Language and Composition and AP English Literature Composition. Elementary School students seeking acceleration may take middle school courses identified through their Personalized Learning Plan (PLP).

Does an Advanced Placement (AP) class in Virtual Academy give a grade bump? Also, will my child be able to take the AP exam if they took an AP class in Virtual Academy?

Yes, students in Virtual Academy who take an Advanced Placement course receive a grade increase as in our other comprehensive high schools. Students who take AP courses are encouraged to take the AP exam with the goal of obtaining a passing score and often resulting in college credit.

Students with or needing Special Education Services?

The appropriateness of PVUSD Virtual Academy for students with special needs would be discussed and determined through the IEP process to ensure the student receives the services necessary to meet his/her needs as outlined in the IEP.

Can a Student still participate in activities, sports and clubs of the student's home school?

YES!!

If we pick virtual academy for my kinder, do we still have to be up to date with vaccines? How recent does the physical have to be? Should it be from the last year? Current year? Last 12-months? Do kinders get assessed before starting school to know their level in knowing kinder things?

Yes, the State of California has mandated that immunizations must be up to date before students can begin school, even with virtual learning. All schools in CA, including charter schools and private schools require students to have immunizations. The exceptions are home schooled children who do not meet with others at all. Foster children, homeless children, and migrant children have 30 days from enrollment to obtain immunization records and districts are required to help get the records. Special education students are another exception and do not have to be up to date or have immunizations to access the special education curriculum in their IEPs. The state is trying to prevent future additional epidemics that could occur if children are not immunized against communicable diseases during the COVID pandemic. Please refer to the Guide to Immunization Requirements for School Entry:

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The law allows for the health examination to be completed up to 18 months prior to entry into first grade or within 90 days thereafter.

All Virtual Academy students will take assessments according to their grade level to determine the proper placement in courses which will be outlined in their Personalized Learning Plan.

If my child starts in Virtual Academy, can he switch back to his regular high school second semester?

Yes, students may return back to their previous school at the end of the semester or at the beginning of each school year.

If a class at our high school is full, can we take the same class in the Virtual Academy?

No, only Virtual Academy students have access to the classes through the Virtual Academy.

I have four kids in elementary grades: K, 2nd and two in 5th. How are parents supposed to work and stay home with their kids? My kids’ daycare does not provide any help whatsoever with the distance learning. So, either I or my husband would have to stay home with our kids. How are we supposed to get by with just one income with this pandemic?

PVUSD has partnered with YWCA and the City of Watsonville to offer childcare for our families who need that support. We are also offering Safe Spaces at several locations around the District for students who cannot access the internet at home. Please contact either your site administrator or Student Services at 786-2390 for more information.

For this school year, we have significantly increased synchronous learning, so parents do not have to provide consistent academic support to their children. Parents can help their children by reviewing the weekly schedule at the beginning of the week, so they are aware of what is being required for the week and then monitor the completion of that work sometime within the day. In addition, parents should establish a routine so that the children are up and ready for distance learning each day by 9am. This will be an important routine that they will need when we come back onto campus. Students should also find the quietest location that they can find while they are engaging in their learning.