Last updated: November 04. 2013 12:39PM - 885 Views
By - ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com

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The Logan County school district rolled out a new program just after fall break this year. The Logan Academy of Virtual Academics (LAVA)is an alternative method of working toward a high school diploma without actually having to attend Logan County High School.

Dr. Barry Goley, Director of Pupil Personnel for Logan County schools, was responsible for seeing the new program up and running.

“We did this to try and help kids that are at risk of dropping out for some reason,” Goley said. “This is for any student that is considered potentially at risk.”

Goley said LAVA might be a good fit for students who are two years or more behind their peers in school, have medical issues, have children of their own or have to work during the day because of financial reasons. Also, students that are currently being home schooled can use to program to pick up additional credits.

“It’s a good way for home school students to get credits in things like advanced math,” Goley said.

All the work for LAVA classes is done online and taught by certified teachers from LCHS.

“Students just log on and can see their assignments and then just work their way through them from the top to the bottom,” Goley said. “There are discussion boards for conversation, assignments that have to be uploaded. The only thing that we do ask is that students come in and take their tests like mid-terms and finals in a classroom so that we can proctor those.”

Students enrolled in LAVA as assigned an academic coach, who they will communicate with at least once per week either through a home visit, by telephone, email or texting.

Students will take a schedule that includes classes in English, math, science and social studies - as well as two electives, one in the fall and one in the spring.

Acceptance into the program is contingent upon completion of an application and review by the LAVA staff.

While taking classes through LAVA, students must adhere to a code of conduct and can be removed from the program for violating it. Some of the reasons a student could be removed include allowing others to complete work for them or any form of cheats, inappropriate use of the online program or failure to access the program for a period of 14 days.

“If we see the students not keeping up, we can look at that and say this might not be for you,” Goley said.

There are currently only two similar academies recognized by the state - one in Barren County and one in Jefferson County.

Goley said that next year, the district is hoping that LAVA will join that group.

“We’re hoping to expand it so that we will have our own school number,” Goley said. “And then it will be recognized as the seventh school in the Logan County district.”

There are currently seven students enrolled in the program despite it being open just a few weeks.

“And I feel like several of those students enrolled now would have dropped out instead of continuing to work on their education,” Goley said.

Anyone interested in the program can find out more on the district’s webpage www.logan.kyschools.us by clicking on the Logan Academy of Virtual Academics link found under the Departments tab.

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