David Smith, CEO of Silicon Valley High School
It’s back to school time, but with Covid-19, clearly this year things are somewhat different. In most areas, schools are not reopening their doors to students and teachers are running their classes online. This is somewhat outside the comfort zone of some schools and teachers, but as we’ve been operating entirely online since 2013, our back-to-school experience here at Silicon Valley High School is not going to be radically different this year. There are some changes, however, that I’m pleased to report:
We will enter the 2021 school year with more than 10,000 students. The student body is growing quickly. We’ve been busy building systems and hiring teams to facilitate further growth through this school year and beyond. Many of the new students have chosen SVHS for supplemental courses, so they can catch up or jump ahead with their studies and earn credits that are accepted for admittance by the University of California.
We released some fabulous courses in the areas of visual and performing arts including photography and film history. There are so many great videos and materials available online today that these courses are rich in educational and entertaining content. We added Precalculus to our math course catalog and upgraded a number of courses, like Money Math. Our course catalog is continuing to grow and we’ll be releasing some additional new courses in the coming weeks and months. All 5-credit courses remain priced at $95 each.
More Options for Schools
As SVHS is an accredited school, students can take courses that are supported and graded by our SVHS teachers and earn credits from SVHS in the form of transcripts that can be merged onto the student’s transcript at his/her home school. Up to this point, public, private and charter schools have recommended SVHS courses to their students and merged the SVHS credits onto the student’s transcript. Now, however, there’s another option for schools.
Schools can now adopt our courses for their online curriculum. As a course publisher approved by the University of California, we now offer our catalog of courses as an online curriculum to schools who want their teachers to do their own grading, and issue their own transcripts. In this model, SVHS is an online curriculum provider—schools don’t need to create their own online courses, they can deploy their own teachers and deliver an effective online experience to students virtually overnight.
More Online Tutoring
Our credentialed teachers are available to provide online tutoring to students via Zoom videoconferencing. Sessions can be booked individually on certain days and times, or repeating on a regular basis. 30-minute sessions are priced at $35 each.
With more customer service staff working more shifts, we now have operators available to answer questions virtually around the clock 7-days a week.
More Full-Time/Diploma Students
To cater for the increasing numbers of students who are looking for an accredited private online school where they can earn their high school diploma, we’re opening up 50 additional slots on our full-time diploma program. The cost is $1,500 per semester plus a $250 registration fee and a $300 graduation fee. This program is suitable for students who are able to manage their own schedules and maintain momentum in their studies online.
So, as you can see, we’ve been busy over the summer and we’re excited about getting back to school for 2021. We’re looking forward to working with new schools, new students and continuing to enhance our online offerings through the fall. We’re here to safely and effectively deliver quality education through the Covid crisis and beyond.