With COVID-19 and the challenges of adapting to eLearning from home, many Ontario students are still finding their footing even as we move deeper into the 2021 winter semester. While it’s true that eLearning through a virtual high school requires some adaptation and discipline, the further truth is that virtual study offers a number of key benefits to Ontario students. Below, we outline the challenges and the payoffs of online learning in Ontario.
The Challenges of eLearning
It is indeed true that many high school students struggle with the rigours of online learning. A lack of constant in-person support can disorient students, especially if they happen to already be struggling with the content of that particular credit. Many students lack the self-reliance and time management skills that are necessary to learn from home, and without the constant supervision of teachers helping them manage their schedule, some Ontario students naturally fall behind.
This challenge extends to parents as well, who struggle to provide academic support as they adapt to new platforms and learning methods alongside their children. Further, families without access to high-speed Internet and computers that can keep up with the portal software are also at an immediate disadvantage.
The Benefits Vastly Outweigh the Hurdles
Of course, there is immense value to online courses in Ontario so long as students and parents know where to find the tools for success. Learning at home through a virtual high school frees students from the inflexible schedule of traditional day schools, allowing students to manage their own time, and free up their schedules to fit in extracurricular or work responsibilities, without falling behind in their studies.
This requires a degree of time management, but many virtual schools in Ontario have dedicated student support services that help students construct and stick to academic schedules.
And because many virtual high schools allow students to fast-track their studies (completing courses in as quickly as four weeks) or slow them down (taking up to a year to complete trickier classes), this sets students up to learn at their own pace.
This academic freedom reinforces a self-directed learning philosophy that will help students not only in higher education at college or university, but will also prepare them for an ever-changing, increasingly remote workforce.
eLearning Helps Highschoolers Achieve Their Goals
At the right virtual high school, students will have access to educators with over a decade of experience, and a team of guidance counsellors who can help them with any necessary adjustments.
And while public schools transitioning to eLearning platforms in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic are only now starting to master online learning platforms, many private online high schools have been custom tailoring their learning models for the last 10 years, already having developed the best postsecondary pathways to help students pursue their goals after graduation.
The Benefits of Hard and Soft Skills
When it comes to virtual study in Ontario, one of the major advantages provided by eLearning is that by studying in an online environment, students are learning much sought after soft skills such as initiative and self-direction, alongside the hard knowledge offered to them by the OSSD curriculum.
Because students are not bound by a conventional school day or the 8 to 3 schedule that comes with it, many students develop and master time management skills without even realizing they’re doing it. This prepares them for traditionally work-intensive university pathways such as engineering and computer science in a way that traditional homeschooling simply can’t.While eLearning requires adaptation, the benefits to students is undeniable. If your son or daughter is pursuing a high school diploma in Ontario, finding the right online high school might be your best option.