This is our second year at Connections Academy and we chose to return because this education format affords us the opportunity to allow our student to soar in subjects where she is strong, and to take our time in areas where she needs more time. We see her progress everyday, what she's learning, and can use all the hours available to learn She is not lost in a sea of children where one teacher is supposed to tailor the curriculum to 10 different needs, trying to be all things to all people (impossible) so no one really gets a quality education. There are no bullies here and we can be sure that our student is living and learning our values and not being taught values that we don't agree with or approve of. It does take commitment from an intelligent adult to be the 'Learning Coach' because they are administering the materials, but "LiveLessons" are held by the teachers. The curriculum is challenging so this isn't homeschooling as people may think where Mom comes up with curriculum and riding a roller coaster is a physics lesson. We are happy with Connections Academy and feel that our student is making excellent academic progress. Her TAKS tests were as expected.
This school is a great option for many families who are looking to school children at home but want more structure and accountability for their children's education. The teachers are wonderful and there is so much more to the school than looking at a computer screen all day. I feel as though my students get a very well rounded education while I can be involved and our family can be together.
My son enrolled in TCAH in October 2012 as an 8th grader. Though he enrolled late, the staff worked with us to get him caught up timely. The program is tremendous for kids who are self-motivated and parents who are disciplined. You will get out of this experience as much as you want; it really is up to the student. My son does better in a classroom setting. However, I can see how this could be a great fit for some students. The teachers were very friendly and cared about my son's progress. I would use TCAH again if the need arose.
The teachers with Texas Connections Academy at Houston are fabulous and very dedicated to the success of their students. My 6th grader has state testing this week so she's been quite anxious. I received a personal phone call from one of the teachers scheduled to supervise during testing, and it touched my heart to have such sincere concern for my child. This teacher isn't even one of my child's assigned core teachers! She voluntarily contacted us because my child's Math teacher expressed concern to her about my daughter. On top of this, my child's Math teacher even sent an endearing email of encouragement the day before her test. Who does that anymore? Our family feels truly blessed to have such a wonderful support system of teachers that love their job AND their students!
Our first virtual school experience was with the National Connections Academy in the Spring of 2012. While it took some getting used to, our son was able to progress through his classes at his own pace. His teachers were responsive and he is/was learning and grasping new concepts. This year, we enrolled my son, a middle school student, in the Texas Connections Academy--mainly to save the cost of paying the tuition (National Connections Academy is a private school). While I did not enjoy doing all the hoop jumping required, it was the same hoop jumping I had to do when I enrolled my son in the local public school the year before. While I did have some difficulty reaching someone on the phone a couple times (during the enrollment process), folks did timely return my calls and emails. We rec'd his materials with plenty of time to spare. He is close to finishing the end of his first semester. He is on track and he is doing well. He speaks with one or more of his teachers every week and enjoys the freedom he has with planning his day. I am curious to see how well he tests in the STAAR test this coming Spring. For right now, we are very happy and satisfied with the program.
I applied to this school MONTHS ago. I sent them EVERYTHING they asked for, on time, some of it TWICE. They NEVER responded to my emails in a timely manner and, after all this frustration, I was told they were not able to enroll him because the enrollment period had ended. If their incompetent staff had done their jobs, I wouldn't have wasted my time with them and my son would be in school now. DO NOT GO WITH THIS SCHOOL!
I enjoy watching my son being engaged in his own education. He can go at his own pace. The school has all resources available to him for every course. The interactive programing online is setup so perfect for getting his lessons taken care of. The school personnel are open for help and are a pleasure to speak to and very helpful.
In the short time my son has been enrolled in this school I have seen him become much more engaged in the learning process, better study and reading skills, self motivation and confidence in his own abilities. I have received more support and guidance from his teachers and staff than I have in the past 2 years of his old school. Whenever I have had a question I have gotten very fast responses from teachers and others. I cannot say enough about this great program As far as enrollment I applied very close to the start date of school they helped me get my son in from the first day of school.
When we applied for this school, after all of the paperwork and jumping through hoops they waited till the last second to tell us that our child was ineligible because the Texas Senate passed something just very recently that will prevent her from attending. This makes our second attempt with this school and it is the last. There were quite a few rude staff members when we tried to get information, but at least when we did get someone helpful, we did get help.
The school's accreditation holds no weight when it comes time to apply for college. The quality of the courses are not good. If you are stuck like we were, try K-12, at least their staff is genuinely interested in helping children.
Ok so i actually went to this school my sophomore year of high school in 10-11... honestly if your considering this school i would just forget about it and consider something else. First of all not lying i didn't learn NOTHING the whole year i went here. There are no teachers no lessons just test and video things that are hard to get anything out of it. The "teachers" never answer the phone and when they do it's quite awkward. speaking of awkward there are like these live lessons 2x a week for every class where like there is this chat room and the teacher like talks into the computer which made me feel really umm awkward. The test Answers for this school are ALL OVER THE INTERNET, parents. so if your a kid that just wants to do nothing and learn nothing and sit at home and play zelda for a whole school year, then this place is for you. when i was ready for 11th grade i went back to a public school and ALL of my credits from connections academy transfered and the people at TCAH were soooo helpful. thats why they get two stars and not one. well i got things to do goodbye.
This is quality educations that challenges a childs mind, takes parental involvement and dedication. Connections Academy has well qualified, caring teachers that are always available.. I am proud that our family gets to be part of better education, and a great oppurtunity. This is not "homeschool", this is an online public school. Your children will have a teacher and a principal, attend live lessons and go on fieldtrips and yes take the state mandated test required by law.
Bypass this school they are disorganized, takes weeks to get supplies and books regardless what the issues are tech(computer theres) The blame is always no parent involvement so the family is unsuccessful. When really its there product and slow site! In the 17 days my kids was in this school there was no real support. They talk about it not being like regular 8-4 school but then tell you and your kids should work with in those hours. But the parent is a unsuccessful coach regardless of the amount of time spent on the phone, if there not a stay at home parent!
TCAH has given my son the opportunity to learn at his own pace, which he wasn't allowed to do at his regular public school. At 8 years old, he was able to move quickly from 5th grade math thru Pre-Algebra, all in one year. I recommend this school highly for subject acceleration as the staff and teachers make every effort to accommodate to your child's learning needs. The teachers are well prepared and make the live lessons fun and interesting. The curriculum is very demanding but it can be done with organization and a desire to learn. My son was able to focus his energy on academics while having enough time to devote to other areas such as beginning programming, soccer, and Spanish. All of this without having to be "at school" from 8-3 everyday. We were also able to participate in 3-4 educational field trips per month. Our overall experience was wonderful and we don't have any complaints.
TCAH is awesome! It is not for everyone, and it isn't perfect. We have been at this school since the pilot year and have loved it-many opportunities for challenges and different experiences educationally. Many wonderful teachers! My child has blossomed and matured educationally. The staff is focused on developing potential and allowing the kids to actually LEARN, not just regurgitate facts for test scores.
I just finished my first year of teaching at TCAH and was reallty impressed with the rigor of the curriculum. I also enjoyed how the teaching process involves the teacher, parent, and student. The staff and administration is awesome as well.
The best thing I can say about TCAH even with their great curriculum, staff, etc., is that they really put the kids first. (With the priority on the kids, all of the other stuff falls into place.) My son was enrolled in another virtual charter for two years, and he (and we, his parents) had a really bad experience there. When I first heard about TCAH, I'd thought about it for my son, but we held off, because I'd heard that they had more restrictions on their school due to the way their charter was written. We finally decided to try TCAH when the other school had become unbearable. Our biggest hurdle to enroll was that our son, on paper, looked like he wasn't working at grade level, because of his grades. He failed practically every course because of their methods. But, because he passed all of his TAKS tests, TCAH allowed him to enroll and at his correct grade level. The difference has been night & day. My son is now a straight-A student, because he now understands the lessons. The teachers are happy to work with parents to make sure the kids are on track. The Live Lessons are relevant to what the kids are working on. My only regret is that we didn't enroll sooner.
In the last 2 years, we have had wonderful curriculum, teachers and success in the program. The teachers are available immediately to help the students, all you have to do is call or email. They regularly have live lessons with students each week. My daughter went from barely passing public school and spending 6+ hours each night studying. Now she spends about 6 hours a day on school and has carried a straight A average for the entire 2 years. She is in 9th grade and was recently one of 18 students accepted into the Junior Honor's Society. The curriculum is much harder than public school, but she finally understands it. They link to great programs like Discovery Channel's educational curriculum, but it is in the lessons exactly where it applies. I have access to all the learning resources I need to help my daughter succeed, including extra worksheets and answers. We regularly participate in monthly field trips in the Dallas area and have met a lot of other great TCAH families all having similar success. Finally there is a free public school that values teachers and treats parents as a partner for your child's success!
I have NO IDEA why Texas Connections Academy would get a rating of 3 out of 10. According to this site's report, TCAH received ratings of 80% or greater in every subject on the TAKS test except for 7th grade math. We are in our 2nd year of Texas Connections Academy. We have 3 very bright children. We have tried public, private, home school and charter schools and we feel we have finally found the answer to all our problems in Texas Connections Academy. The material is challenging so my children are being pushed and the material is engaging so they are not bored. This semester ALL of my children's teachers have a Master's degree so there is no doubt of their qualifications. Most of the teachers are seasoned teachers and all are passionate about helping kids learn. My 11 year old went from barely passing the TAKS test to commended performance in ONE YEAR attending Texas Connections Academy. If you are looking for a program where you plop your child down in front of a monitor and walk away expecting miracles this is not the program for you but if you are able to be a part of your child's learning experience this program can provide your child with an OUTSTANDING education.
This was our first year with TCAH and while at first it was a bit over welming it has been the best decision we have made as a family. My daughters have had their attitudes change. Teachers have been wonderful and the lessons take you step by step on what to do. The only complaint I have is that for some reason they are having a hard time getting the state of Texas to approve high school, so I might have to find some where else for my daughter to go for next year :(
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