WE KNOW YOU HAVE QUESTIONS….
PLEASE CLICK ON A TOPIC BELOW TO SEE ANSWERS TO 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY'S FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS.
ABOUT THE SCHOOL...
+ WHAT IS A 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY LAB SCHOOL?
24/7 Learning Academy Lab Schools are learning environments designed and operated by 24/7 Learn and are dedicated to research-based instruction and furthering innovation, entrepreneurship, and social justice in education. We do everything a traditional school does; we just do it differently.
+ WHAT DOES 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY OFFER?
- An onsite and virtual lab school
- 15 to 1 onsite student/teacher ratio
- One on one and small group instruction
- Personalized and project based learning
- A rigorous curriculum guided by national educational standards
- Constant access to educational support
- PSAT, SAT, ACT Test Prep and College preparation
- Professional skills and certificates
- Internships and apprenticeships
- Multiple programs for various types of learners
+ IS 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY A GIFTED SCHOOL?
No, we do not consider ourselves a school just for gifted learners. We admit learners of differing academic abilities and believe we can effectively serve learners of all skill levels. Services for gifted learners can include but are not limited to:
- Accommodations in classroom settings
- Part-time assignment to both regular and special classes and curriculum
- Full-time grouping with students of similar abilities
- Acceleration or grade advancement
+ WHAT GRADES AND HOW MANY SEATS ARE AVAILABLE IN THE ONSITE MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAM?
Our inaugural year, started August 2017, we offered up to 15 onsite seats and 5 virtual seats for learners ages 11 to 16, grades 6th - 10th available. Each subsequet year we will add one additional grade level so that the oldest students can continue leading the school: The 2018/19 school year will be age levels 11 - 17, the 2019/20 school year will be ages 11 - 19.
+ IS 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY A PRIVATE SCHOOL?
Yes, 24/7 Learning Academy is all of the following: private school, independent school, lab 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. We are a brick-and-mortar and virtual school associated with 24/7 Education group and we are located in Orlando, Florida. Because we are a private school, we are able to experiment with a new model of education, which we are working to make accessible to communities around the world. We view ourselves as a private school with a public purpose.
+ IS 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY A MONTESSORI SCHOOL?
We incorporate much of Maria Montessori's philosophy, however we are not a Montessori school. In addition to self-directed and mastery based learning, we also use the latest nteractive technologies, hands-on projects and the Socratic Method for discussions.
+ IS 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY A RELIGIOUS SCHOOL?
No. We expose Learners to the importance of religious freedom and acceptance of differing beliefs, but we do not promote any specific religion.
+ IS THE 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY ACCREDITED? 24/7
Learning Academy offers accredated classes and diploma in partnership with Florida Virtual School.
+ WHERE SHOULD YOUR STUDENTS COME FROM?
Our onsite program accepts learners from Orange and Seminole Counties, Florida. Our Remote program accepts learners from across the U.S. and the world. If you live outside of the U.S. and would like to attend the 24/7 Learning Academy Virtual School, please click here to contact us.
ABOUT THE STUDENTS...
+ WHO DO WE SERVE?
24/7 Learning Academy currently serves learners ages 11 - 16, in grades 6th through 10th in the fall of 2017. We are expanding the ages and grade levels each year up to age 19. We are an independent school that serves learners and families committed to taking ownership of their education and being part of a new model of learning. Click here to Learn more about our application process.
+ WHO DOES WELL AT 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY?
Families who understand our model and believe in our vision, and learners who are interested in being part of a pioneering lab school community.
+ CAN STUDENTS ACCELERATE TO A HIGHER GRADE LEVEL FASTER AT 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY THAN AT A TRADITIONAL SCHOOL?
At 24/7 Learning Academy, we have Personal Learning Levels and multi-age activities instead of traditional grade levels. We don't group learners by age and date limits, we group them by personal learning levels as well as flexible academic groups. Learners get as much structure and support as they need to learn at their optimal pace. The program is designed so learners will stay in the same Personal Learning Level until they show mastery of the required learning objectives and can successfully advocate for his/her promotion.
+ DOES 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY SERVE SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN?
We are not trained to serve learners with serious learning disabilities, however we believe that many minor learning disabilities are commonly misdiagnosed. Each learner has their own individual learning needs, and we craft plans and programs to cater to those. For example, a remote educational program can be designed to serve learners that cannot be onsite. Click here to see our Future Leader (student) profile.
ABOUT TUITION AND ADMISSIONS...
+ WHAT IS OUR TUITION?
Our onisite High School Tuition is $5,988 per year ($499 per month), our onisite Middle School Tuition is $5508 per year ($459 per month), our highschool virtual school tuition is $2,388 per year (199.00 per month), and our virtual middle school Tuition is $3108 per year ($259 per month). Our goal is to serve all learners who apply. Billing options are 12-month, bi-yearly, and annually . If you are considering 24/7 Learning Academy but have already made a non-refundable down payment to another school, we will credit you for that amount (up to $1000).
+ ARE THERE SIBLING DISCOUNTS?
We offer families a 40% tuition discount for the first sibling and 50% discount for additional siblings.
+ WHAT IS OUR REFERRAL PROGRAM?
We offer up to $1000 or 15% of paid tuition per student as a referral fee to anyone who refers a learner. Click here for additional details.
+ DO WE OFFER TUITION DISCOUNTS AND FINANCIAL AID?
Discounts of 20% are available for annual tuition paid upfront and 10% for bi-annual tuition payments. 24/7 Learning Academy is dedicated to providing tuition assistance to qualified applicants. While our available tuition assistance may be limited, we encourage families who are experiencing financial hardship to still apply.
+ WHAT ARE THE ADMISSIONS FEES?
There is a non-refundable $50 application fee for all applicants, and a $200 enrollment fee for all registered learners.
+ ARE THERE ENROLLMENT DEADLINES?
We accept learners through a rolling admissions process, and admit students year-round.
+ WHY AN AUDITION INSTEAD OF AN APPLICATION?
Each individual at 24/7 Learning Academy matters so we want to know who you are. The audition process is meant to be fun and to give you an opportunity to learn more about 24/7 Learning Academy and experience if 24/7 Learning Academy is right for you and your family.
+ HOW CAN I APPLY?
ABOUT THE CALENDAR AND SCHEDULE...
+ HOW LONG IS THE SCHOOL DAY?
Our school day lasts from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., every learner may stay for Extended Day from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. and our flexible drop-off is from 8:00 to 8:30 a.m. Our onsite and virtual school day takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Thursday Friday. Wednesday is a remote learning day focussed on internships, community service, and remote work. Click here to view Daily Schedule.
+ HOW LONG IS THE SCHOOL YEAR?
We have school throughout the year with breaks spread out over 12 months. Please view our public calendar to see the scheduled breaks for the current school year. These breaks typically include a Thanksgiving break, a long winter holiday, a mid-winter break, spring break, an early summer vacation, and a late summer vacation. Since learners are at the center of the learning experience at 24/7 Learning Academy, we've created our extended year schedule with learners' health, wellness, and optimal learning in mind. Click here to view Yearly Schedule.
+ DOES 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY OFFER A HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA?
We provide a traditional high school diploma, and a digital learning portfolio that details a Learner's educational accomplishments and journey.
ABOUT INSTRUCTION AND METHODOLOGY...
+ WHAT ARE OUR INSTRUCTIONAL METHODS?
Our instructional methods are personalized, blended, and project based. Learners learn by doing, teaching, and through reflection. Our daily practices are based on the philosophy that repetition brings mastery and require Future Leaders (students) to:
- Reading for an hour a day.
- Writing for an hour a day.
- Practicing Public Speaking 15 minutes per day
- Practicing Mathematical thinking for an hour a day
- Researching for 30 minutes per day
- Web Development and Coding for 30 minutes per day
- Participating in Socratic Discussion for 30 minutes per day
- Participating in physical activities a minimum of 30 minutes per day
- Participate in Projects a minimum of two hours per day
+ WHAT IS PERSONALIZED LEARNING?
At 24/7 Learning Academy, "personalized learning" means that each learner's education is developed and shaped by the learner, working with our team. Whenever possible, the education experience is customized to the learners' academic path and pace. We leverage blended learning as an important tool in an effective personalized strategy.
+ WHAT IS BLENDED LEARNING?
Blended learning happens when a portion of instruction is delivered via digital/online media with some element of student control over time, place, path, or pace. Essentially, a portion of the traditional face-to-face classroom experience is replaced by educational web tools in order to provide students with a more personalized and self-paced learning experience. At 24/7 Learning Academy, the use of blended learning tools is always enhanced by guidance from an Advisor or Mentor, or Specialist.
+ WHAT IS PROJECT BASED LEARNING?
Project-based learning (PBL) is a dynamic classroom approach in which learners explore real-life, augmented, and virtual contexts to acquire a deeper knowledge of the material at hand. We strongly believe that learners learn best when their school experiences have context and are connected to their lives and global affairs. learners spend roughly half their time at 24/7 Learning Academy learning through projects, often of their own design informed by their Independence Level. All projects are interdisciplinary, and all projects connect to goals within our Graduate Profile (character strengths, cognitive skills, global citizenship, creation, purpose, independence, foundational fluencies, and deeper learning concepts).
+ WHAT ARE PERSONAL LEARNING LEVELS, AND HOW DO THEY WORK?
At 24/7 Learning Academy, we have Personal Learning Levels and mixed-age activities instead of traditional grade levels. This means that instead of grouping learners by age and date cut-offs, we group them by Personal Learning Levels as well as in flexible project groups. Students get as much structure and support as they need to learn at their optimal pace. The program is designed so that learners will stay in the same Personal Learning Level until they show mastery of the required learning objectives and can advocate for his/her own promotion.
+ CAN PREPARATORY STUDENTS RECEIVE DUAL ENROLLMENT CREDIT?
Yes, our learners can participate in dual enrollment and AP courses, through our partnership with Florida Virtual Schools.
ABOUT SCHOOL CULTURE...
+ WHAT IS YOUR POLICY ON DISCIPLINE?
The 24/7 Learning academy approach to discipline is a minimalist one and founded on common sense. We begin by instituting the fewest rules necessary to maintain a positive learning environment. Misbehavior is often merely the symptom of a deeper issue, so we proactively address potential disciplinary issues and will modify the curriculum, if necessary, to accommodate a learners needs. Most importantly, we treat our learners with respect which we have found solves, and even prevents, most disciplinary problems.
+ IS LUNCH PROVIDED OR DO STUDENTS BRING THEIR OWN LUNCH? WHERE DO STUDENTS EAT THEIR LUNCH?
Learners will need to provide their own lunch. We have refrigerators, microwaves, and toaster ovens available if a learner needs to heat their food. Staff members will gladly assist learners with warming their food.
+ DOES 24/7 LEARNING ACADEMY OFFER ATHLETIC PROGRAMS?
No, 24/7 Learning Academy does not have a formal athletic program, but under state law 1006.15, Learners can participate in all athletic programs offered by their local public school as long as they meet the eligiblity requirements.
24/7 HOMESCHOOL CO-OP
PLEASE CLICK ON A TOPIC BELOW TO SEE ANSWERS TO 24/7 CO-OP
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS.
LOCATION AND FEES
+ What is a co-op? Isn't this like a private school? Is this a church school?
Co-op classes are a cooperative effort among participating parents and our organization. We support families to supplement their children's home education by working together on subjects and projects that are difficult to teach at home or best taught in group settings. Some activities, such as P.E., need a large space or several participants to present the subject matter most effectively. Other subjects, such as biology lab or computers, may require a financial investment in materials which can be shared with a group of families to lessen the expense for everyone. We believe that we can accomplish more as a group by taking advantage of each other's strengths and experiences. Although we do offer a private school, this co-op is not apart of it. The 24/7 Co-op applies homeschooling methods to a group larger than just one family. Parents are still the primary teachers for classes taught at the 24/7 Co-op. 24/7 Learning Academy Co-op does not keep records or transcripts. The 24/7 Co-op may participate in some of our private school activities for social and collaboration opportunities only. Our co-op is an all-inclusive, secular homeschool community. We do not have a religious affiliation and do not discriminate against anyone regarding religion, politics, race, gender, age, educational methods, or other differentiating factors.
+ When and where does the co-op meet?
24/7 Learning Academy Homeschool co-op (24/7 Co-op)meets weekly during the school year on Monday and Wednesday for Learners (11 to 13) from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. and on Tuesday and Thursday for Learners (14 to 19) from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. in one of our virtual classrooms. We have two periods in the afternoon with a lunch from 3:30pm to 4:00pm. We operate for three semesters per year (fall/winter, spring, and summer). Each semester covers 14 weeks and includes 2 breaks per semester. We serve homeschoolers around the world virtually.
+ What are the fees?
Our registration fee is $75 for one semester, and $150 for three semesters. Some classes require additional fees for supplies and materials ranging from $1 to $50. We do offer sibling discounts for large families. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn about our sibling discounts for the 24/7 Co-op. All fees are paid electronically and are nonrefundable.
+ How do I enroll my children? How can I get on the waiting list?
Registration is mandatory because it holds a slot for your homeschooler. We intentionally keep the classes small (Up to 10 Learners per Middle School Group, 12 Learners per High School Group) so they fill up fast! We don't want a family to show up and then find out the sessions they want are full. Please pay the registration fee to register your child. To complete the registration, you must attend Registration and Orientation and to fill out necessary forms and pay additional fees, if required. If the classes you need are full, or you move here after co-op has begun, you may certainly email us to add your name to the notification list to be notified when we open for new enrollments for the next semester. Simply email email@example.com with your name, phone, and children's ages, grades, and mention 24/7 Co-op.
+ Do you accommodate children with special needs or disabilities?
The terms "special needs" and "disabilities" cover a vast array of diagnoses. Children with special needs may have mild learning disabilities or profound mental retardation; food allergies or terminal illness; developmental delays that catch up quickly or remain entrenched; occasional panic attacks or serious psychiatric problems. We have had children with asthma, food allergies, ADHD, epilepsy, mild developmental delay, and hearing impairment. Some students adapted well to co-op, while others chose to finish out the semester and did not return. Because most parent-teachers are not equipped to teach or maintain discipline in classrooms containing children with severe disabilities, please prayerfully consider if co-op is right for your special needs child before enrolling. Depending on the parent, teacher, and Leadership Team's assessment of a child's ability to participate in classes with minimal disruption to the learning process, it may be necessary for the parent of any child to be assigned as a helper or teacher in some or all of their child's classes.
+ What are the requirements for enrollment? Do we have to subscribe to other 24/7 Learning Academy services?
Membership is open to all homeschooling families of any homeschool with learners 11 - 19. You do not have to participate with or use other 24/7 Learning Academy programs. Our goal is to have enough parents to ensure that no particular parent needs to "work" the entire co-op session, and that the co-op is a source of training, socialization, support, and encouragement for parents as well.
+ We participate in another co-op, too. Can we be involved with that one and 24/7 Co-op?
This is completely up to you. Some learners and families have been able to handle two co-ops successfully.
+ We missed the Fall/Winter Semester. Can we still enroll for Spring or Summer Semester?
Yes, you can still enroll for spring or Summer semester even if you did not attend in the fall. Your high schooler may earn the full high school credit by completing the coursework from fall semester over the summer.
+ What if we have to quit the co-op unexpectedly?
Please understand that our co-op will not “fit” every family, so we ask you to consider your decision to join before you actually sign up. We do offer virtual options to accomodate families who have to move, travel, or deal with injury and sickness. We suggest reading "Why or why not join a Homeschool Co-op" before registering because by enrolling your learner you are committing to participating for the full semester. When even just one parent is late or absent or quits, it puts a heavier burden on the rest of us, and consequently, the children suffer. Plus, the homeschool community is a small one, and you don't want to burn any bridges unnecessarily. Nevertheless, we understand that family comes first in a crisis. If an unexpected emergency, such as moving, serious illness, or death in the family, has made it impossible for you to continue 24/7 Co-op in person, please email the admissions@247learningacademy to discuss fulltime virtual options.
PARENT PARTICIPATION AND BEHAVIOR
+What do you mean when you say we have to volunteer or “work” at the co-op? Can I specify where I want to volunteer?
Our co-op is truly a cooperative effort. We need every participating parent to keep the co-op functioning smoothly. By registering your children, you agree to work during their class periods as a teacher, team teacher, teacher's helper or on the set-up or clean-up crew, with at least one period as your break time. Parents who volunteer to teach or team teach two classes automatically get two breaks. When you pre-register your children, please specify the classes in which you would like to volunteer. If your children feel more comfortable having you with them or if you need help teaching that subject at home, you can request their classes. If your children do better without you present or they prefer the independence of a class without mom, this can be arranged, too. Just indicate this option when you pre-register your children and specify if you would rather help preschool, elementary, junior high or high school. Also, let us know what subjects you would like to teach. Those who do not indicate a preference will be assigned where they are needed most.
+Do parents have to complete a background check in order to participate in the 24/7 Co-op?
Yes, Parents must complete a background check to participate in the 24/7 Co-op. By law, you must pass a background check in order to be eligable to work with children in an educational setting. All of our background checks are completed through https://www.backgroundchecks.com and the fees are seperate from your registration fee.
+When do I complete my background check?
Parents must complete their background checks during the registration process and before they can start working with other children.
+Why don't you allow drop-offs without the Drop off fee? Why do parents have to stay all day?
Parental participation at co-op is mandatory Our co-op is truly a “cooperative effort.” As homeschoolers, we parents are the primary teachers of our children, and this responsibility does not end with co-op.
+If I sign up my children for co-op classes, does that mean that I don't have to teach them at home?
No! The parent is still the primary teacher for classes taught at co-op. While our classes are designed to provide students with specialized instruction and support, co-op classes do not absolve the parents from their responsibility for their children's education. Parents must ensure that their students keep up with assigned work each week as well as administer tests and determine final grades. 24/7 Learning Academy homeschool curriculum can support with this, and is an additional offering of 24/7 Learning Academy.
+Are parents allowed to sit in on classes?
Absolutely! Parents should sit in on classes. Also, parents are used as “helpers” in all classes, so each class usually has 2 or 3 adult teachers and/or helpers. We believe that more interaction between learners and adults leads to a more relaxed relationship between both groups. Extra hands are always a blessing. Besides, homeschooled children are accustomed to having a parent close by to give quick responses to their questions, so more adults in the room means more attentive help for the students.
+How is behavior handled?
- Every student is expected to behave in a proper and respectful fashion at all times. If a child is disrupting a class session, he or she will be removed from the class and the parent notified.
- If a parent fails to control the child’s disruptive behavior, the co-op reserves the right to dismiss the child from that class.
- An incident report will be filed and a meeting may be requested by the Board with the parents to discuss necessary actions if there was no proper resolution or correction in the child’s behavior.
CLASSES AND LEARNING PROJECTS
+What size are the classes?
We intentionally keep our classes small. The teachers of each class set the limit on the number of students they can handle. Except for PE, most classes range between 4 and 10 students.
+How are classes planned each year? Can I suggest a class?
Activities are chosen according to a yearly theme determined by the 24/7 Learning Academy Education team. If you have a need or suggestion for a class, please notify the Leadership Team. We love to get new ideas. In addition to our parent and volunteer teachers, we partner with other online learning platforms to support with the core academic subjects.
+What is the schedule of classes this semester?
Click here to see an exact daily schedule
+Are classes ever canceled?
Since we offer virtual sessons inclement weather should never be a reason we cannot provide a class.
+Do you go on field trips?
Although we do not plan field trips, interested parents may certainly organize field trips that relate to a class or project. Preferably, field trips should be scheduled on a Fridays, since we cannot take a day off from co-op to go on a field trip. As field trips may interfere with other homeschool activities or family plans, the trips are not mandatory, but they make excellent opportunities for rounding out our children's education and helping them “see” what they are learning. In the meantime, we do invite guest speakers to the classes when possible, which sort of brings the field trip to co-op!
+How are classes filled? How can I guarantee my child will get in?
The 24/7 Co-op registration is first come, first serve. Families currently involved in the 24/7 Co-op are given the chance to pre-register for the next semester first, followed by families on the notification list (waiting list) for that semester, then registration is open to the public.
+How are classes divided? Since we homeschool, how do I know what “grade” my child is in?
Groups are divided by age as of September 1: High school (grades 9-12; 14+ years old), Middle school (grades 6-8; 11-14 years old).
+What exactly is done in the classes? Is it lecture format or projects, etc.?
Co-op classes are reserved for group activities, such as discussion, debate, experiments, labs, projects, re-enactments and simulations. Classes enrich and enhance what you do at home. This is why Middle and high school students are expected to read and study during the week in preparation for what they do at co-op. Tests are not given during class, but parents may test at home, or teachers may provide tests for parents to administer at home.
+My child is older, but can he take a class for the younger group?
We request that students not be more than two years above their grade peers in age. In most cases, children can take a class for the younger group as long as they are within 2 to 3 years of the other students, they do not present a disruption to the group, and there is space in the class. Generally, parents should be able to decide which classes their learner’s attend based on each student's skill level, maturity and interests, but the teacher and Leadership Team make the final determination.
+My child is 12 years old (or another young age) but does high school level work. Or my child is very interested in one of the high school classes. Why can't he take a high school class?
We request that students not be more than two years below their grade peers in age for many reasons. Most of our classes are limited by the space of the rooms and by the abilities of the teachers, who may be equipped to handle only a certain age-range with an expected maturity level. Furthermore, for many courses, particularly those offering credit hours to high school students, separation by age is necessary based on the skills required; after all, we want upper level courses to be challenging for high school students trying to earn high school credit. As a result, sometimes the skills required for a class outweigh the student's interest in that class. Additionally, when a student is far advanced in academics but young in age and maturity, he may not “fit” in most high school courses. An older student can effectively sit in on a class meant for a slightly younger age group, but a younger student may not work out as well in a class intended for older students. While accelerated learners may have an advantage in academics, they usually have not achieved the maturity to go with it. Even though they can handle algebra and read high school literature, they would not be able to discuss many of the broader topics that the other high school students are interested in discussing and studying. Furthermore, although accelerated learners may be intellectual equals of the teens, they are not equipped emotionally, physically, or in any other way to participate in the teens' social events, and one of the benefits of co-op is making friends and developing a social life. Fellow classmates, who would be so much older and more mature, may not accept them as equals or friends. In other words, their emotional/philosophical level is still in elementary school, where their age places them. For their self-esteem alone, it would be better for them to be with their age peers.
+How does my high schooler earn high school credit hours?
When your child signs up for the 24/7 Co-op, he or she is participating in a co-op. As such, parents are still the primary teachers of their children. We would not presume to take that responsibility from the parents. To earn the high school credits suggested for each class, parents should not only ensure that their students complete all homework, but also discuss topics during the week with their children in preparation for further class discussion. Additionally, parents administer tests and determine final grades. To use a science class as an example, such as chemistry or physical science, students read the text book and answer questions during the week at home; then at co-op once a week, they do the experiments and participate in discussion. They take the tests at home.
+What curriculum do you use? Do we have to use the same curriculum at home?
The 24/7 Co-op uses PBL projects created by the 24/7 Learning Academy along with other instructional materials, and online platforms. Each parent/volunteer teacher determines the books and materials to be used in their class. The class and project descriptions will note if the learner must purchase additional supplies. Learners will need access to a smart device, we recommend a either a tablet or laptop, notebook, and writing utensils. You are free to use additional materials. Co-op is meant to lift the burdens of parents of middle and high schoolers, not create more. Many families follow the curriculum of co-op for every subject, but some have their own favored course of study at home in addition to co-op.
+Are there tests?
Testing is offered by 24/7 Learning Academy. Some classes may provide tests for parents to administer at home, or parents may certainly test their children at home if no tests are provided.
+Why is there homework?
Middle school groups have homework, and high school groups have homework. To earn the high school credits suggested for each class, students must complete all homework. If not, they may be asked to go to study hall or to their parent. Habitually unprepared students will be suspended or expelled from the class. It is virtually impossible to cover all necessary topics of a subject or even go in-depth on one issue in only one or two hours per week. No one expects high school students to retain everything in one or two days; instead, they are expected to work during the week to reinforce and prepare for what they do at co-op. Remember, one benefit of our co-op is to serve as a basis for accountability. For students to earn the high school credit, parents should make sure high school assignments are completed during the week. Also, they should discuss topics during the week with their children in preparation for further class discussion, and they should assign any additional coursework they feel may be necessary to complete the subject.
+What is a syllabus?
Each parent/volunteer teacher will use a class syllabus or project overview, which is simply a brief outline or list of what will be done each week. The syllabus supplies structure to the class and lets the parent/volunteer teacher hand off to a helper or newcomer if she is absent. It also provides a guideline that parents can use to devise supplemental lessons at home and to ensure their children are prepared for class each week.
TEACHER / INSTRUCTIONAL GUIDES
+Who are the Teachers/Instructional Guides?
The co-op does not employ teachers. Co-op teachers/instructional guides are fellow parents and volunteers who volunteer their time and expertise free of charge; they may be certified teachers or a parent with a degree, special knowledge or passion for a subject. In addition, one of the benefits to group teaching is having access to guest speakers! Teachers and parents may schedule anyone as a guest speaker. Parents may elect to “team teach” a class by taking turns or teaching jointly. That way, the teachers can trade off and share the responsibility each week. Additionally, teachers have at least one adult helper, if not two, in each class.
+What is the difference between a teacher/instructional guide, a team teacher and a helper?
Every class has at least one teacher/instructional guide and one helper, but they are two different jobs. A teacher plans and teaches the class, including writing a description, setting fees if required, buying materials, organizing lessons and activities, and implementing them each week. Two or more team teachers in a class share those responsibilities equally, in any way they wish. They can take turns each week or each month, or one can plan while the other implements. Teachers and team teachers are guaranteed their class and their children's slots in co-op at every period since teachers' children have priority. Additionally, teachers and team teachers get a discount on the family registration fee each semester. A helper assists the teacher during class time and fills in when the teacher is absent. A helper can volunteer for a class, and we will try our best to accommodate her request. However, we cannot guarantee that a helper will be in the class she specifies, especially if there is a need in another class. Also, the helper's children are not guaranteed their slots in co-op as they are lower in priority after teacher's children and high school siblings. For details on expectations for teachers and helpers, please consult the Guidelines.
LUNCH AND ILLNESS POLICIES
+Do you have a lunch break?
We have a lunch break between 3:30 and 4:00pm. The 24/7 Co-op does not provide lunch. Most families bring lunch and eat in the designated areas where we have access to a kitchen with a microwave and refrigerator. If you prefer to eat out, or pick up lunch and bring it back to the church, then McDonald's, Subway, Hungry Howies Pizza, Wawa’s and Zaxby's are within a 10-minute drive. If you live nearby, you and your children may certainly go home for lunch as long as you return by 3:55 p.m. in time for project time.
+What if my child has a food allergy (For onsite Meetings)?
We have no control over what individual families bring for lunch. When we are alerted to a food allergy situation, the most we can do is ask children and parents to wash their hands with soap and water after eating. For group meals and potlucks we do our best to inform co-op members of the allergy risk and label shared dishes to the best of our ability. Otherwise, parents and children are responsible for monitoring their own food allergies and sensitivities. If your child has a serious allergy, please make sure you carry an EpiPen with you at all times in the event your child is exposed. Also, please notify your child's teachers in case food is planned for a class activity.
+What is your Illness Policy (For onsite Meetings only)?
Participants should not attend the 24/7 Co-op or group events if they are sick or are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Colored mucus
- Diarrhea, vomiting or nausea (within last 24 hours)
- Eye drainage
- Virus or infection (known to be contagious)
- Rashes (contagious)
- Head lice
- Fever (within last 24 hours - unmedicated)
Should there be any questions, the teacher/Instructional guide of the class will determine if any student fails to meet the health guidelines. Please keep in mind that this policy is essential for the health and protection of all of our learners and families.
If one of your learners become ill and you must leave the 24/7 Co-op facility, you may choose to remove all of your children for the remainder of the day or find another parent who agrees to be responsible for your other child(ren) while they are on the premises. With that parent’s consent, you must sign yourself out and name the other parent as guardian for the remainder of the day.
In the event of your planned absence, another parent may assume guardianship of your child(ren) on the co-op day and must notify the Co-op Leadership of such an arrangement immediately upon arrival.
+Does the 24/7 Co-op have a statement of faith?
Our co-op is an all-inclusive, secular homeschool community created for homeschool families who desire to have access to a selection of excellent courses and project based learning opportunities. We do not discriminate against anyone regarding religion, politics, race, gender, age, educational methods, or other differentiating factors.
+Can I bring a visitor to co-op? Can my older, graduated homeschooler visit (Onsite Meetings Only)?
No. Visitors may join you for lunch only. Due to insurance and location requirements, only registered, paid students or parents are allowed to attend classes. Please do not put us in the awkward position of having to ask you to take or send your guest home.
+I have a child still in public school. Can I bring him to co-op on his school vacations (Onsite Meetings Only)?
No. Due to insurance and facility requirements, only registered, paid students or parents are allowed to attend classes. If you have children in public or private school who are out of school, they may not attend. Please do not put us in the awkward position of having to ask you to take or send your child home.
+Who manages the co-op? What is the Leadership Team? Why isn't it an elected board rather than self-perpetuating?
The 24/7 Learning Academy Co-op (24/7 Co-op) is managed by a leadership team of two chosen by the participating families, in addition to the 24/7 Learning Academy leadership team. The parent leadership team is self-perpetuating, meaning the leaders serve until they step down and the existing team along with the 24/7 Learning Academy leadership team determines the replacement. A fundamental rationale for a self-perpetuating board structure is its ability to provide continuity of purpose over a long period of time. Existing Leadership Team members select those new Leadership Team members who they believe are best able to preserve 24/7 Co-op's core values and carry out its mission. BoardSource, a national organization focused exclusively on good governance practices for nonprofit boards of directors, provides the following description of self-perpetuating leadership: “A board that elects its own members has the advantage of determining its needs based on the profile of the present board. It can stress group dynamics as well as missing skills as the key focal point for the search of new candidates. It can stress the need for diversity among board members. This process clearly is labor-intensive for the current board, but it provides an opportunity to bring together a group of committed people who have had a chance to define their mutual goals. Self-perpetuating Boards have lower costs, make decisions more rapidly, have less political turmoil, and are more effective at oversight.”
+Do the students get together for social events outside of co-op?
Because so many of our children have made friends in co-op, they get together occasionally during the week or over breaks informally at each other's homes. Nothing has been formally organized, however. This could be because there are so many homeschool support groups already in this area.
+Can I host a birthday party for my child during lunch at co-op (Onsite Meetings Only)?
No. With the number of children even in our small co-op, there would be someone with a birthday a few times a month, so it could quickly get out of hand. Also, families new to co-op may feel uncomfortable buying gifts for children they just met. We do not want co-op to escalate into an expensive series of birthday parties. However, some parents do bring cupcakes or cookies, enough for the entire co-op, on their child's birthday, and their classmates can certainly sing "Happy Birthday" before class begins.
+Do you have a dress code (Onsite Meetings Only)?
Yes. Parents and students should wear appropriate modest clothing. Basically, if in doubt, choose something else.
To standardize what is considered appropriate, parents and students need to adhere to the following dress code:
- Halter tops, spaghetti straps and/or visible cleavage are unacceptable.
- Tank tops are not acceptable.
- Shorts, dresses, and skirts must come down to the person’s fingertips when arms are resting to the side.
- Bare midriff, front or back, is unacceptable.
- Underclothing should not be visible at any time.
- Clothing may not have inappropriate messages or graphics that are vulgar, rude or appear to dishonor God or the Christian faith.
- Shoes and shirts are required at all times.
- A person’s eyes must be clearly seen at all times.
-We do not want to tell adults or children that they are out of line, so parents should police clothing before leaving for Co-op. Do not go to a Co-op session and then ask the Leadership Team if clothing is appropriate. If you need to ask if something is appropriate, then it is not, so wear something else.
-Infractions will be decided on a case-by-case basis by the Leadership Team, which will make the final decision on what clothing is or is not appropriate. This decision will be non-negotiable, although the Leadership Team will be glad to discuss it at the end of the day.
-The parent will go home or will take the student home to change clothes, and the parent will find substitutes while away from Co-op.
+Do you have an "open house"? Can we visit a class in advance (Onsite Meetings Only)?
No, we do not host an open house nor can we have visitors in any of the classes.
+How can I let other co-op families know about an upcoming event?
We communicate with our members in three ways: web site, emails, and our newsletter/blog. First, we keep our web site updated regularly. We also have a Facebook page. Second, we send out emails strictly limited to co-op information. Third, we have a weekly newsletter/blog bulletin board where anyone can post upcoming events or information. If you have information to share with members, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org to support in the distribution.