Why many high school students are turning to online academies

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Throughout October, iCademy Middle East, the region’s only KHDA-accredited online school, continued to see a steady stream of students seeking to enroll for the 2021-2022 school year. As schools in the UAE officially started the new school year on September 1, the iCademy Middle East enrollment team was surprised by the number of high school students still looking for a placement.

Jeffrey smith

“There is still a lot of anxiety related to the pandemic in the community. Families are looking for more flexibility than what a traditional school offers. Whether it’s pricing, mixed / in-person or online options, or even when to start school, we are able to tailor a high school experience to meet academic, socio-emotional and financial support for most students and families, ”said Lucy Dawson, enrollment coordinator for iCademy Middle East.

According to school records, iCademy Middle East currently has 574 students enrolled in its high school program out of a total of 1,700 students. The school nearly doubled in size during last year’s pandemic despite closing its in-person learning center program.

“Last year, parents were looking for stability and certainty at a time when nothing seemed certain. iCademy Middle East has reassured many families by providing them with top-quality continuity of education at a relatively low cost. Our high school program continues to be a boon to many students, ”said Lisa Khoury, Enrollment Coordinator.

Samira Mahmoud is an American student who joined iCademy Middle East this year to graduate from American high school. Prior to joining the online school, Samira was a high performing student at one of the top American schools in Dubai.

“My experience with iCademy Middle East has been amazing! The flexibility to do my homework at my own pace and at my own pace has helped me achieve my goals, ”said Samira. The flexibility of iCademy Middle East has provided Samira, and dozens of other high performing students, the ability to accelerate their learning pace and complete an entire year of school in as little as one semester. After graduating from the NEASC-accredited iCademy Middle East, Samira will go to college in the United States.

“We enroll students from both sides of the spectrum. Some are ahead of the academic level and find traditional schools slow and boring. Others are behind on grade and need more time and personal attention than a traditional 25-30 class allows. We are able to tailor our program to the needs of our students, instead of requiring our students to adapt to our school structure, ”says Nuri Muhammad. As an online school registrar, Nuri has been helping students graduate from high school in the United States for over four years.

Flexibility starts with allowing parents and students to decide how they would like to attend school.

Online only: This allows students to work from home, or anywhere else. Students have access to their learning 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, unlike home schooling, students have a real teacher, who notes homework; an educational advisor; a school principal and a counselor.

VLCP: The Virtual Learning Coach provides “live” virtual support to online students.

Knowledge center: 12,000-square-foot learning center provides daily blended model education to nearly 150 iCademy Middle East students. “Families come to the Knowledge Hub for our friendly environment and our personalized approach. Our learning coaches provide support to students, building both confidence and confidence, ”said Angela Johansen, Senior Learning Coach in the secondary section of Knowledge Hub.

High school students aren’t the only ones taking advantage of the flexible nature of the online program. From financial hardship and job insecurity to non-traditional lifestyles, iCademy Middle East offers parents a cost-effective and stress-free way to earn an American high school diploma for their children. Based on their listings, this is a trend that won’t slow down anytime soon. For more information visit www.icademymiddleeast.com

– The author is Director of School Partnerships, Middle East and Africa, iCademy

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