How It Works
Curious how online learning works?
With online learning, your child can learn at home, or wherever there’s an internet connection, while enjoying the benefits and support of a school program. They’ll complete a mix of online lessons and offline activities, using K12-provided books and materials.* California-credentialed teachers provide instruction in virtual sessions called “Class Connects.”
The nine California Virtual Academies (CAVA) use quality curriculum from K12 that’s designed to let students find the learning style that works best for them, allowing them to find their own path to success. Each online classroom offers engaging and relevant lessons that build on your child’s interests and abilities. Our career and college prep program also helps middle and school students prepare for life after graduation.
What’s my role as a parent?
You’ll play an active and important role as your child’s Learning Coach. You’ll spend time each day to:
- Provide academic support, motivation, and guidance throughout the school year
- Ensure your child is on track with assignments and coursework
- Communicate with teachers
- Report daily attendance
If you or your child’s legal guardian are unable to fill this role, you can choose a family member, friend, or another trusted adult to be the Learning Coach.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which counties do the nine California Virtual Academies serve?
Our nine CAVA schools serve the counties listed below. Our enrollment consultants can help you identify the right school for your student.
- Contra Costa
- Los Angeles
- San Benito
- San Bernardino
- San Diego
- San Francisco
- San Joaquin
- San Luis Obispo
- San Mateo
- Santa Barbara
- Santa Clara
- Santa Cruz
How many of my children can I enroll in California Virtual Academies?
Because California Virtual Academy schools provide the lesson plans and educational materials needed for grades TK–12, many parents find it easy to enroll multiple children in the program.
What does it cost to attend one of the nine California Virtual Academies?
Because CAVA is an independent public charter school program, it’s tuition-free. Enrolled families receive the K12 curriculum, and eligible families receive a loaner computer, printer, and internet stipend.
What is the attendance policy?
Students are expected to complete the California requirements of 180 days of instruction. Attendance in a California Virtual Academy is recorded in the Online School by marking lessons complete, submitting assignments as required, and entering in the number of minutes spent on each school lesson in the attendance screen. It is expected that lessons will be completed and attendance will be logged before the end of each day. When a student completes work offline, the parent/Learning Coach must maintain a school supplied learning log as specifically directed by his/her assigned teacher, for each day of schooling without accompanying online work. All learning logs must be signed and submitted to the assigned teacher at the conclusion of each school day or as requested by the assigned teacher. If a learning log is not submitted, the teacher will not credit the student with attendance for that school day.
Can our family take a vacation during the school year?
How much time will my child spend online?
In the younger grades, many of the online lessons include offline work. Students in grades 3–5 spend no more than 15 to 30 percent of their school time on the computer. Screen time increases in middle school to 50 to 70 percent, and by high school students spend 80+ percent of their time online.
How do students interact socially?
In addition to interacting with their classmates in their Class Connect sessions, students have access to other social opportunities. Throughout the year, students are invited to participate in school field trips (e.g., to historical sites, museums, zoos), picnics, and other social events. Local students and parents can get together on a regular basis in their areas. The online family directory in the Learning Coach app provides a way for California Virtual Academies families to network with families in their region of the state. With online discussions and forums, new types of communities can be formed based shared interests rather than geography.
*Course materials vary by course and school.