Web-based classroom begins its 2nd year at CAM


August 14th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Students with the CAM School District head back to school tomorrow (Thursday), but some won’t be taking their classes with their classmates. Students taking part in the tuition-free, web-based Iowa Connections Academy, will have their instruction at home for this, the second year of the program.

Principal James Brauer told The Daily NonPareil the Iowa Department of Education recognizes the Iowa Connections Academy as being one of the schools within the CAM Community School District. Brauer said the last school year ended with 230 students. About 84-percent chose to return for the internet-based classes this year, and with new enrollments, they’re expecting to welcome 350 students when the school year starts tomorrow.

Students enrolled at Iowa Connections Academy are able to come up with a school schedule that works best for them, with the help of certified teachers and the students’ parents. By state law, the academy is required to ensure students are completing six hours of school each day – just like any other school.

Even though the instruction is computer-based, students are required to complete many assignments without the use of a computer. They spend time reading textbooks, using workbooks, reading library books and doing hands-on experiments – just like the students at a traditional school. Brauer says that because close to 100 percent of the students between kindergarten and eighth grade showed substantial academic growth at the end of last year and surpassed Connections Academy’s goal, school officials are looking to the revamp their Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses.

Aside from regular school courses, students can take courses in law enforcement, criminal justice, business and marketing, sports management and more medical courses. The school also offers Advanced Placement courses; provides Talented and Gifted options; honors options; and Foundations – or essential courses for students who may be experiencing academic difficulties.

For more information on Iowa Connections Academy, visit connectionsacademy.com or call 1 (800) 382-6010.