New Online Public School, Reach Cyber Charter School, Approved to Open in the 2016-2017 School Year

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Statewide K-9 public cyber charter school to offer tuition-free, multi-paced school option for Pennsylvania students; enrollment opening in June

Reach Cyber Charter School logo

Statewide K-9 public cyber charter school approved for 2016-17 school year

After receiving nearly 1,500 signatures in support of the school, we are extremely excited to offer Pennsylvania families this new, multi-paced cyber school with 21st century learning and STEM-enrichment opportunities.

Reach Cyber Charter School, a full-time online public charter school, has been approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to serve students in grades K-12 from across the state. Reach Cyber Charter School*, a Pennsylvania Connections Academy, will begin serving students in grades K-9 in the 2016-17 school year, and will grow to include grades K-12 by the school’s third year of operation. The school will deliver a tuition-free, individualized online learning program to students statewide with flexible pacing options and 21st century learning and STEM-enrichment opportunities. Enrollment for the 2016-17 school year will open June 2016.

“We look forward to expanding the school choice options available in the state with Reach Cyber Charter School and working with Connections Academy to build on its long-standing reputation as a leading online learning provider in Pennsylvania and nationwide,” says Board President David Taylor. “After receiving nearly 1,500 signatures in support of the school, we are extremely excited to offer Pennsylvania families this new, multi-paced cyber school with 21st century learning and STEM-enrichment opportunities.”

Pacing Options
Students enrolled will have three flexible pacing options—they can choose to go to school following a traditional calendar, year-round option, or for high school students, an accelerated schedule. Students can choose the pacing option that best meets their individual learning needs:

  • Traditional Pacing (Grades K-12): Students complete a full course load during the traditional September-May school year.
  • Year-Round Pacing (Grades K-12, available beginning July 2017): Students take a lighter than usual course load in the fall and spring semesters, and also attend the summer session. This option allows for more time for outside interests throughout the year, while still completing a full workload over the course of the year.
  • Accelerated Pacing (Grades 9-12): Students complete a full course load in the fall and spring semesters, and attend the summer session full-time, enabling them to graduate early.

Online Education Program
Reach Cyber Charter School will combine Pennsylvania-certified teachers, an award-winning curriculum, technology tools, engaging electives, and social experiences to create a supportive and successful online learning program for families and students who want an individualized approach to education.

Learning from home, students will work closely with Pennsylvania licensed teachers using detailed daily lesson plans that can be personalized to meet their individual needs. Typically, a parent, or another adult “Learning Coach,” chooses to monitor student progress in the home. A cyber school approach serves a wide range of students, including those who are significantly ahead or behind in the classroom, those who need a flexible schedule or learn at a different pace from their peers, and those who need more individualized attention or live in isolated rural settings. As a public charter school, there are no fees or tuition to attend and all students are required to take the same state assessments as traditional public school students.

21st Century Learning & STEM-enrichment
Reach Cyber Charter School will focus on developing student skills aligned to the "four Cs" of 21st century learning: Critical thinking and problem solving, Communication, Creativity and innovation, and Collaboration. Reach Cyber Charter School will also incorporate additional Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) offerings through multiple enrichment opportunities, including community partnerships with organizations such as the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University, participation in a variety of STEM competitions and learning activities, guest experts in fields such as robotics, cyber security, environmental science, and astronomy to gain exposure to today's cutting-edge innovations, and more.

Enrollment for the 2016-17 school year will open June 2016. Interested families are encouraged to attend one of the information sessions being planned across the state and online to find out if a cyber school is the right fit for their students. For more information, visit http://www.ReachCyberCharter.com.    

In preparation for its inaugural academic year, the founding board will identify a teaching and learning center in the Harrisburg area, and hire a school leader and team of certified teachers based in Pennsylvania. Teachers and staff will work out of the school’s learning center.

*The Reach Cyber Charter School charter has been approved and is currently pending execution by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

About Reach Cyber Charter School
Reach Cyber Charter School is a recently approved statewide, tuition-free, online public charter school for students in grades K-12 (initially serving students in grades K-9). The school was approved in April 2016 by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and will begin serving students in grades K-9 in the 2016-17 school year. Reach Cyber, a Pennsylvania Connections Academy, provides students with the flexibility to learn from anywhere there is an Internet connection and with an innovative online school curriculum that meets rigorous state education standards. The combination of certified Pennsylvania-based teachers, an award-winning curriculum, engaging electives, technology tools, and social experiences provides a supportive online learning opportunity for students who want an individualized approach to education. Reach Cyber will incorporate 21st century learning and STEM-enrichment opportunities, as well as offer flexible pacing options that allow all students to choose attendance based on a traditional calendar option, year-round option, or for high school students, an accelerated schedule. For more information, call 800-382-6010 or visit http://www.ReachCyberCharter.com.

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Rachel Smith
Connections Education
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