We have homeschooled for 11 yrs and this was our 1st yr in GCA. We loved it!! My oldest daughter was in 8th grade this past yr and it was a wonderful experience! I also had 1 in kindergarten but we didn't care for the phonics portion (really lacking). The D.I.B.E.L.S assessment for the lower grades is a joke. During this test your child has to sound out or say as many 3 letter NONSENSE words as possible in 1 min. They are called NONSENSE because they're not real words. Why would you not test a kid on specific words or sentences if you want to know their literacy ability? My younger kids will not return to GCA until they are older. The teachers are amazing though!! They always respond quickly to emails. The live classes are such a great asset to the student's learning experience. The state testing was even a great experience. Mrs. Lowndes is the principal for the middle school and is wonderful at her job. She is very active with school events and is always willing to listen for ways to improve. Hopefully my daughter will graduate from GCA and my smaller kids will definitely return when older. Can't say enough...Wonderful!!
This is a great school to be in because everyone, and I mean everyone helps out each other in classes. The teachers try their best to get back to us in kmail in a timely manner, it just depends on how busy their day is. People can work at their own pace and they can also turn in assignments a week or two early unlike brick and mortar school. If students need retake a quiz or test for their subjects because they didn't get a good grade on it, they can ask their teacher to reset the quiz or test compared to brick and mortar where you only get one chance to take them. This school is a awesome school because you also get to meet new classmates and it doesn't really matter what grade you're in because the teachers only really know what grade you're in. I would recommend this school to others.
My daughter has attended Georgia Cyber Academy for over three years now, beginning in eighth grade. She is now a junior, and we have been more than satisfied. We are grateful that we have this choice for her education. I agree with others who have said that this is not for every family, because it will not work if there is no active learning coach for the student. The learning coach must be attentive to the student's course work, monitoring daily schedule and gradebook to assure that the student is completing assignments and attending class connect sessions. We have been fortunate that our daughter's teachers have been enthusiastic, responsive, and helpful when we have a problem (with a quick response to our kmails). As learning coach, I have had to reach out for assistance to my daughter's homeroom teacher and high school counselor. I have even written to the head of the school once with a question about school policy. Each time, I have received a quick response, information, and assistance with any problems. As I said, this is not for everyone; but if the traditional system has failed to meet your student's needs, Georgia Cyber Academy will prove a godsend.
I am a student currently attending 9th grade in the 2014-2015 year, and my grades have by FAR rocketed. Being a victim of bullying in public school to no help from the authorities, distractions, poor lunches and who knows what else, I had to seek refuge in my own home to accommodate for my educational needs. The teachers help me when I need additional assistance, and there are Class Connect sessions throughout the day. The teachers have question and answer opportunities at the end of each session always, so no one is left in the dust. The classes are average, ranging from 15 to 100. Their new grading policy (anything after 10 days has a top grade of 70) keeps people on top of things, running a shorter risk of falling behind. A majority of the assignments are computer graded with unlimited retakes (not all are unlimited retakes, some are) so getting an A is not difficult. If you become frustrated trying to get the grade that you desire, your teacher can reset your grade and you can have another chance at a higher grade. I will definitely finish my high school career with GCA and I will never go back to brick and mortar schools. Thank you GCA, for reviving my desire to learn.
We enrolled our 5th grade student for a week before transferring back out. I cannot say that the system is bad or the material is insufficient, but it's definitely not what we imagined a 'virtual school' to be. I would consider GCA to be more of a guided homeschool program than a virtual school. You act as your child's learning coach, which is typical of virtual schools, but the backend support leaves a lot be desired. You are a task master for your child's offline work - you grade worksheets and mark items complete in the system. Your child does take online assessments at the end of each unit to demonstrate competency, does have some guided lessons online and independent reading/writing assignments - but be prepared to spend a significant amount of time as their primary educational support center.
Ga Cyber Academy is definitely a highly competitive educational environment. GCA kids are on the computer however long they elect to be! They can simply choose between "On Line Schooling" or use their books ! They have both resources! In our brick and mortar school system , all of our children "sack race". They are tied together at the hip !! One falls, they all fall ! The whole class has to go back through last week's lesson because the Basics have to be understood by ALL and NO CHILD SHALL BE LEFT BEHIND !! However, those fast learners, gifted students , they will just sit there, hush and wait ! They will grade the slower kids' work: Leaders !!! Ga Cyber Academy is MASTERY based ! GCA is Accredited by the State of Ga, and SACS the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Mastery Based means that Learning is no longer a sack race. Your child determines the pace, his or her pace. Students learn as much as they will! GCA Teachers have been helpful, responsive, concerned, grateful. I have their cell numbers! If your child is Mentally Gifted, with a Passion for Education, with computer skills, Ga Cyber Academy is truly light years ahead in the Education process.
Buyer Beware! This school is not for everyone. If you, as the parent, are not willing to put in the time necessary to help your child(ren) succeed, DO NOT attend this school. Are there "live" classroom setting? yes. Do they provide some material? Yes. But that where it ends. This "school" is highly unorganized, and the turn over rate for the "teachers" are ridiculous. Because they have such a high number of students its very easy for your child to "fall through the cracks." My daughter lost three teachers in one year. A homeroom teacher took from December -March to be replaced. A math teacher took from October - February. And a science teacher was MIA for two whole months. When it comes to test time, they have no clue as to what they are doing, and no one is in charge. Trying to have your children released from this farce of a school is just as hard. Be prepared to fight to get your child's transcript; because each child they lose, they lose money, so they're not willing to let go of anyone. Buyer Beware!
GCA is Awesome!!!! My daughter made leaps and bounds. She loved that she was not rushed through assignments. Her CRCT scores increased dramatically form last year's brick and mortar school. She met and exceeded. CRCT Scores improved 10 to 20 points from last year's brick and mortar CRCT results. We had teacher's that had very quick response times to our questions via kmail. The class connect participation was great. The teacher would offer small group rooms on certain days for students to ask any questions if they needed additional help. I have to say reading some of the negative responses in this review posting made me wonder if they really attended GCA or if it was a misfortune of a hit or miss experience that can be expected in virtual or brick and mortar from time to time. 8th grade here she comes!!!
We have been with GCA for 5 years after getting fed up with our local poor performing traditional school. During these 5 years our daughter has excelled scholastically. The school promotes an environment of learning and challenges the kids to learn by requiring that they make a minimum of 80 on tests to go to the next lesson. Staff has always been responsive and available when we have questions. Their special education department has provided assistance for our daughter's learning disabilities that weren't provided at the traditional school - she gets an hour a day with a special ed teacher for her area of concern vs. 10 minutes a week at the traditional school...and as a result of this she has passed CRCTs for the past 3 years!