Frequently Asked Questions


Courses


What online courses are currently available?
Courses are available for grades K-12. The West Virginia Department of Education reviews courses for quality in instructional design and alignment with the West Virginia Content Standards and Objectives. These reviews, facilitated by West Virginia teachers, have led to an approved list of courses. View a complete list of available courses here.

Who are the Virtual School Content Providers?
Most courses are provided on the WV Learns platform using West Virginia teachers and an approved course curriculum. The curriculum may be developed by a West Virginia teacher or leased from an outside entity. In the few circumstances where a course is not available via the WV Learns platform, the West Virginia Virtual School will contract with distance learning companies, organizations, K-12 and higher education institutions to provide instruction. In these situations, a student will take courses directly from these providers once the approval process is completed.

What types of online classes do students generally take?
Students who are participating in a full-time virtual program can take all courses -- core and electives -- to meet graduation requirements. West Virginia students in a brick and mortar school typically take courses online not offered in their local schools. Additionally, some students are taking courses due to scheduling conflicts. Elective, world languages and AP courses are among the most requested virtual courses.

How long does an online course last?
Most online courses generally allow and encourage students to proceed at their own pace. Specific timelines are set by the local school system. Courses are arranged in .5 credit formats to meet the needs of all students regardless of school schedule.

How many online courses can I take?
Students who attend a brick and mortar school are limited to two courses at a time at the expense of the WVVS. Tuition fees for full-time virtual students are paid by the local school district; therefore, the school district will determine the number of courses permissible for full-time students.

Why does the virtual school offer the same course from more than one course provider?  How do I decide which one to take?

Students are always placed with a West Virginia teacher through the WVVS if space is available.

Can I attend the WV Virtual School full time?
Yes, with permission from the local school district.

Can I earn my diploma from the WV Virtual School?

No, the WV Virtual School is not a diploma-granting institution. If a student meets the requirements for a high school diploma, the local school district will provide the diploma.


Eligibility


Are there prerequisites or academic requirements for the courses?
Sometimes. Prerequisites are clearly stated in the course descriptions on the WVVS web site. Additionally, students must be knowledgeable about and abide by the state, county, and/or local Acceptable Use Policies and have an @stu.k12.wv.us email account through the West Virginia Department of Education.

What type of student is a good candidate for an online course?
Students need to be self-motivated and be able to direct their own learning to fulfill course requirements and achieve academic success. Specific technology skills, learning styles, study habits, and communication skills are indicators of success in virtual courses.

Grades/Credit


Will I get credit from my school for my online course?
Yes, if the West Virginia Department of Education and the local school approve the course.

How will I be assessed? What are the testing procedures?
Assessments are included in each course and will be scored by the licensed teacher associated with the course. Advanced Placement exams are the responsibility of the student or the school depending on the local policy and funding procedures.

How is my grade recorded on my transcript?
If the West Virginia Department of Education and your local school approve the course, your grade will be recorded on your transcript just like any other course grade you receive from your school. The online teacher will issue the grade and the local school system is responsible for putting the grade on the student transcript. All courses must be included on the student transcript including a WF for courses dropped outside of the 14 day grace period.

Instructional Materials


What instructional materials are used for course delivery?
Most courses include the instructional materials. If instructional materials are not included, the local school system will help provide materials.


Are there additional charges for instructional materials?
On rare occasion, the local school system may need to provide supplies for online courses just like they do in brick and mortar classes (i.e. art supplies, science lab materials not typically found around the home). The local school system receives legislative funding to provide materials for student instruction.

Local School Involvement


What is the local school's responsibility?
The local school must approve the online course, facilitate registration of the course through the WVVS contact, and record the grade for the course on the transcript. The local school is also required to assign the student to an on-site facilitator.

Can I take a course from home?
This is a local school/county decision. To ensure equity, access must be available to students at school. Many students are working both from school in an assigned time period and at home. However, if a student is approved to work at home, the student must have appropriate computer equipment and an Internet Service Provider. It is a local level decision as to whether the school district will provide devices or Internet service and should be communicated to the student/family prior to commitment to an online course.

Will I work with a teacher from my own school?
A teacher, counselor, or administrator from your school may be assigned as your facilitator. Your academic progress will be monitored by your facilitator. The facilitator will communicate with you periodically to assess your progress and help you with problems. Your local facilitator is your first contact for problems.

Non-Public School Student Eligibility


Are students in home school, private or parochial schools eligible to take a Virtual School course?
Yes, all students in West Virginia are eligible for virtual courses by enrolling as a part-time student in the local school in which a student would attend (per state code). By registering as a part-time student, all accounts will activate to participate in the courses.

Registration/Drop


How do I register for an online course?
Students should see a school administrator, counselor, or WVVS contact. There is a virtual school contact at every school in West Virginia who may facilitate the logistics of enrollment.

How do I get approval to take an online course?
The Virtual School policy indicates that the approval for participation in online courses is a local decision.

Can I drop my online course?
Yes. At the request of many school systems, the WVVS limits the grace period to drop a course without penalty to 14 calendar days. This will ensure the student does not miss quality instructional time if he/she must return to a traditional classroom environment. However, students must check with their individual schools regarding school guidelines on dropping online courses.
All drops must be approved by both the local facilitator and the West Virginia Virtual School.

Technology


What computer skills do I need to take an online course?
The more computer experience a student has, the less he/she will have to focus on the technology and will be ready to focus on the course content. It is the responsibility of the local school district to assist students who are not familiar with Office365, email, internet browsers, and other technologies needed for online courses.

What computer system requirements do I need to take an online course?

Technology requirements for virtual school courses change over time and are determined by the course. Students should have a device with updated browsers

Tuition/Payment


Who pays for the online course?

Financial responsibility for online courses will vary based upon the type of program.

FULL-TIME VIRTUAL program -- Funding for students in a full-time virtual school program is provided to the local school district through FTE monies. The local school system is responsible for paying tuition fees to the WVVS for full-time students. The student is not charged tuition for attending a public school virtual instruction program.

SUPPLEMENT program -- The WVVS receives a set allotment of legislative funding to provide online courses to students who typically attend face-to-face classes but must take a virtual class because the course is not available in the brick and mortar school or a scheduling conflict exists. Pending the availability of funding, full tuition costs for the first ten students in an individual course per year at a school are paid through WVVS state funds. Tuition for each student above ten in the same course, from the same school, will be shared by the WVVS and the local school system. The local school system will pay $200 per student per semester for each student above 10 while state funds will be used to pay the remaining per student course cost.

SUMMER SCHOOL program -- Summer courses may be offered through the WVVS but payment for summer enrollment shall be the responsibility of the county or the guardian.