Connections Academy | Tuition-free Online School Review

Connections Academy (iNaCa): Online School Reviewed by Valid Education

International Connections Academy offers quality online education experience through its flexible educational programs. Based in Columbia, this online public school is a part of the Pearson group and a division of ‘Connections Education’. Pearson group is one of the leading learning companies in the world offering world-class educational content. And there is a network of online public schools under the Connections Academy.

Connections Academy has been serving the student community for over two decades now.  All enrolled students are provided the necessary tools and educator support along with flexible learning opportunities to complete high school online.

Online schooling provided by this renowned institution is powered by its world-class curriculum. in addition, this online public school also promises adequate handholding through its trained teaching faculty. Like any other virtual school, it is designed to meet the varied learning needs of students irrespective of their location or life preferences. And Online programs through Connections Academy schools cover entire K-12 grades.

Accreditation & Recognition

Connections Education is accredited by ‘Cognia’. And Connections Academy is one of its divisions.

Connection Academy is a Cognia accredited online public school.

There are many schools supported by Connections Academy, holding their own accreditations through one or more of the six accrediting organizations (regional). However, a new school that joins its network starts with the accreditation process generally after operating for a complete year.

Accreditation is important, as it assures students and parents that the academic credentials issued by the school are globally acknowledged and accepted by colleges, universities, and employers.

Features and Offerings:

Virtual schooling through this leading institution provides full-time education to students from grades Kindergarten to 12. It’s courses include core, electives, and even socializing opportunities for the holistic development of its enrolled students (through interest clubs and activities). The schools operational under Connections Academy are aligned with the educational state requirements to meet the required standards. All iNaCA graduates receive U.S recognized diploma accepted across colleges and universities.

Connections Academy Fee Structure

Connections Academy is a tuition-free educational choice. This means that the parents only need to spend on other school and technology requirements. Parents need to bear the cost of school supplies such as notebooks, writing material etc. like the best schools in United States. Some of the Connections Academy schools do provide a computer to their students.

Students are also given an option to attend field trips round the year. And the families who choose to attend these need to bear the related costs.

School Highlights:

• Instructional Delivery

Being one of the credible accredited online high schools Connections Academy is delivered through planned online communications. The institution follows a structured approach to delivering education through learning management tools. Students can access online lessons and library resources through their computer/laptop. And they can approach teachers in case of any doubts (through calls or e-mails).

• Curriculum Highlights

For a student’s holistic development, Connections Academy schools follow a high-quality English medium curriculum fully aligned with the national and state standards (U.S aligned). It includes content like interactive videos, graphics, and other engaging lesson content.

Parents can view sample lessons to know more about the quality of their content from here.

Acceptance in Colleges

Please find below some examples of the colleges and university that have accepted graduates from Connections Academy. The complete list can be checked here.

Colleges and Universities that Accept Graduates from Connections Academy
American University
Cornell University
Boston University
Stanford University
University of California, Berkeley (UC
Georgetown University
University of Pittsburgh at Pittsburgh
University of Virginia
Northwestern University
Ohio State University

• Study Material and Educational Planning

Parents who enroll their children in Connection Academy schools receive textbooks, workbooks, online textbooks, lesson plans, and enrichment courses etc. Each student’s educational journey is planned after a careful review of the individual strengths and weaknesses through the previous performance indicators.

• Stakeholder Collaboration:

For student success, parents and teachers in most high schools in America work closely with each other to help the student meet their learning goals. In a K12 online school like the Connections Academy, a learning coach is expected to devote 5-6 hours with an elementary level child. This duration is reduced to 2-3 hours at the middle school level. And for high school students, it is reduced to only 1-2 hours in a day. Other than this, the learning coach is free to contact the teacher for any assistance.

• Students with Special Needs

All students with physical or learning disabilities are also served through personalized educational opportunities. They can decide their own pace and time through the flexible structure of such best online schools.

Points to Note Before Applying

  1. Like in any other school, to get enrolled in Connections Academy, students do need to take standardized tests as per their respective state/district laws. However, the students do get support in the form of test preparation programs.
  2. The availability of printed material like textbooks also varies from state to state. And in some cases even from course to course. And the choice of text (digital or physical) is also subject to the student’s grade.
  3. The provision to provide a computer or subsidy for internet access to families is subject to some conditions. A family might receive these benefits. But this depends on their school and the state. As only some schools provide these benefits (without any extra cost).
  4. Unlike the best schools in United States, their graduation Rates are not satisfactory. In fact, these are below both the ‘Every Student Succeeds Act’ identified graduation rates and even their internally defined benchmark.
YearGraduation Rates as per California
201847.4%
201958.1%
Source – Comprehensive Support and Improvement Prompts Form California Connections Academy
  1. Student-teacher ratio is quite high in many schools supported by Connections Academy. Some examples are as follows:
Public School district data 2020-2021, 2021-2022
NameStudent/Teacher Ratio:
Ohio Connections Academy Inc41.41
FLORIDA CONNECTIONS ACADEMY48.38
OKLAHOMA CONNECTIONS ACADEMY35.26
Source- National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education

Final Thoughts

K12 online schooling through Connections Academy is a convenient option for students who are disciplined and focused on virtual learning. They can complete their schooling and prepare for standardized tests under the guidance of trained teachers. You can consider replacing a regular school classroom with this option. However, it is advised to consider all its aspects to be completely convinced

Connect with the school to know more about its online programs. Website: https://www.connectionsacademy.com/

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is Connections Academy as good as top US high schools?
    In terms of offerings and accreditation, Connections Academy is at par with the best accredited online high schools. However, the graduation rate of this school is quite low.
  • What do best online schools like the Connections Academy do to prepare students for college?Rigorous courses at the high school online level prepare students for college along with more tutor support, field trips, guidance etc. for the college environment.
  • What are the graduation requirements of best online k 12 schools like Connections Academy?
    These details differ from school to school. You can check the graduation requirements of Connections Academy on this page.

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