Online or virtual schools allow students to learn on their own terms, and taking control over one’s learning is a powerful thing. With that power comes responsibility, but from that responsibility can come great growth.

There are many positives to choosing online – flexible schedules, fewer obstacles, individualized attention, skill building for the future – but what it comes down to ultimately is what drives the student.

Through accredited online public schools, like Minnesota Virtual High School, students choose when and where they meet their deadlines and benchmarks. Whether it’s at their house, a coffee shop or favorite spot, students can settle in and work at their own pace to best understand content. But they’re not really alone – they’re part of a virtual academic community, with teachers and peers, just a click away.

Answer these five questions to see if online schools are the right academic community for you or your student:

  1. Do you want to make room for another important part of your life?

Many students have a lot going on, from outside school commitments to medical or mental health issues. Online schools give students a flexible use of time while still gaining access to a successful secondary education at an accredited school.

With online learning, students are able to commit to their passion – whether it’s arts, sports, culinary or chess – or take care of themselves emotionally and physically. Flexible schedules let them work around rehearsals, practices, travel, appointments and/or productions. They can both meet their personal obligations and gain a high school diploma that is the same as a diploma from an onsite school.

  1. Can you learn the way that best fits you in your current class or school?

Once the walls are taken down, students have the opportunity to experience learning in a way that makes sense to them. A student may excel in math but need to move much slower when it comes to reading and language. Online learning allows them to adjust the pace of each of their classes according to their needs for success.

Online schools also free up teachers to focus more on progress monitoring and one-on-one help, even though students and teachers may be physically miles apart. When a student receives quality individualized attention, they are known, feel supported and more apt to succeed, regardless of the miles.

  1. Do you want to take charge of your own learning? Are you ready to learn and use the skills to do so?

With the control and flexibility of really being in charge of your own learning, comes responsibility, ownership and a sense of independence. However, to be successful you must also put certain skills into place.

We’ve all faced frustrations with technology when things are not working as they should. But what keeps us tapped into our computer, tablet or phone? Persistence. In order to be successful with online schooling, students must persist through the glitches, learn to ask questions, seek help when needed and turn challenges into learning opportunities. Persistence is a life-long skill to be used in all aspects of life.

Successful online students also develop time management skills, discipline, personal responsibility, independence and problem solving skills. In order to receive an online diploma, students must schedule their time, work regularly on each class, overcome obstacles and organize their work load to take charge of their own learning.

  1. Do you want to learn to communicate better and become more tech savvy?

We live in a fast-paced, high tech world and effective communication along with technological skills have become more crucial for success. Reading, writing and presentation skills are a large part of learning through online courses and are often touted as the most sought after qualities in business. They are also are essential for quality college applications and post-secondary success.

Schools, like Minnesota Virtual High School (MNVHS), depend on students completing their course work with applications that mirror the real-world. Using a common device through a 1:1 program gives equal access to innovative learning and advances the growth of both students and staff. Technology is integrated in so much of our daily lives and is only increasing. Gaining a foundation with software and problem solving is crucial to stay adaptable as technology evolves.

  1. Are you or your student ready to take charge of your own learning?

MNVHS is an accredited, student-centered, tuition-free public school open to Minnesota residents in grades 7-12. Their part-time and full-time enrollment options give you flexibility to see if online learning is the right fit for you and your family. Go to for more information or send them a message with your questions. They’re ready to help you or your student succeed with anywhere and anytime learning.

MNVHS is a member of MTCS | Minnesota Transitions Charter School, a K-12 academic community with onsite, online and specialized options, just for you and your family.