MySchool@Kent is a real, local school with genuine credits and a local diploma, but designed for you, by you. The school is student-centered and teacher driven and features online instruction with extensive support. It's flexible, rigorous and personalized, so you can learn at your own pace. But you're not left alone. You'll have lots of support and help when you need it.
How is this different from a traditional school?
It's completely different! MySchool@Kent is a combination of interesting, new ways of learning, with the best part of school - caring relationships. New ways of learning include online instruction, online projects, coursework and discussion boards, along with a laptop/wireless card for learning anywhere. Plus, you'll experience just-in-time learning, tutoring, even group discussions in our face-to-face (F2F) learning labs in a comfortable, café-style environment.
And the relationships? Our experienced Blended Learning Instructors assist students on-campus, F2F and online. These caring adults - all Michigan certified teachers - will get to know you and help you succeed in this new hybrid school. In addition, our F2F Success Coaches provide the kind of support you need, when you need it. They are available every day to help students discover what works best for them.
This approach allows students to work at their own pace (both fast and slow) and arrange classes around any schedule, so you can learn when and where you choose - wherever a laptop goes. This means you can also take college classes, volunteer, hold a job, help with family responsibilities, take more courses in your interest areas, and fit your goals and dreams into a high school schedule.
Are there teachers AT MySchool@Kent?
Yes - lots of them! And while they are highly-qualified, Michigan certified teachers, they won't be teaching in the usual sense and your relationship with them will be different. They will help facilitate your learning with the online instruction you access from the laptop. They will assist you with homework questions, brainstorm with you about projects and help you get ready for assessments. Plus, if you run into an obstacle you just don't know how to get around, they will work with you to make sure you don't get stuck.
Blended Learning Instructors
- Highly-qualified and Michigan certified
- Looking at the whole student and his/her total learning experience throughout the class
- Help with additional explanation, tutoring, and assistance with homework and projects
- Each content area teacher is available during the school day F2F twice weekly in each location
- Available during the school day online and after school hours (including weekends)
- Grades and tracks student work
- Offers support, feedback and monitors progress
- Tracks/monitors student work to make sure the student progresses through class
- Coordinates efforts with Blended Learning Instructors
- Will provide referrals, make calls, help eliminate all barriers to progress
- Helps with homework and offers feedback
- Communicates with parents/guardians weekly
Is MySchool@Kent connected to a local high school?
Yes and no. Students are not required to participate in the local high school, but there are some exciting options there, like specialized electives, music, clubs, sports, and other activities, that students may want to experience. Because of our connections to our districts, these options are available. The local high schools also typically grant credits and diplomas, but students can opt for a Certificate of Achievement and a list of completed courses if their families prefer that.
How much does MySchool@Kent cost?
$0. There is no charge for this public program. Funding comes from Kent ISD and contributions from the local school districts. Both costs and contributions depend on the number of students participating, with a portion of the state's per-pupil grant helping to support each participating student.
Where is the F2F part of the program located?
Twice a week (minimum), students come to our Learning Lab on the campus of Kent ISD, located just off the East Beltline between Knapp and Leonard streets. The program features a café-style environment just inside the Kent Career Tech Center, on the east side of the building (parking lot #1). For those students who need an alternative to the main campus location, we have two satellite locations in the county. These SuccessLink classrooms are at KDL Gaines branch and the Downtown YMCA.
Who oversees this program?
As a part of Kent ISD, MySchool@Kent is organized by our administrators, operated by our staff and governed by the Kent ISD School Board. The original vision and planning for the new school came from the Superintendents of our local districts through their Secondary Re-design Committee. Bill Smith, our Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Services, is the administrator managing this project.
Does this school follow the traditional school calendar?
Yes, MySchool@Kent follows the typical calendar, although students can start or finish classes at any time during the school year.
Does the school accept students from every year of high school?
Yes, any student in grades 9-12 and age 19 or younger.
Do students have to be currently enrolled in high school?
As long as students are in grades 9-12, they can be homeschooled or from any charter school or traditional school within Kent ISD. Homeschool families can contact us for details at 616.447.5680.
Does the school accept middle school students?
Yes, in 2016 MySchool began to offer limited programming for MS students needing alternatives to traditional school schedules and environments.
Is transportation to the physical location provided?
Most students will find their own transportation, including The Rapid bus line. Some students may be able to share existing district transportation schedules to our campus. You will be able to work with your sending school to arrange district transportation.
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WHY ONLINE LEARNING AND IS IT RIGHT FOR MY STUDENT?
Online learning is new to many students and Michigan Virtual University has produced a parent guide to help answer these questions. Read the Parent Guide to Online Learning for more information.
Where is the curriculum from?
Our classes are created or vetted by respected institutions and foundations, primarily from open educational sources. These include ground-breaking institutions such as:
- The National Repository for Online Content (supported by the Hewlett and Gates foundations )
- Florida Virtual School
- Montana Digital Academy
- Open High School of Utah
Multiple content sources provide a wide variety of high-quality online courses to meet the needs of students in grades 9-12. The courses we've selected offer students top-quality content, engaging instruction and effective design, all from trusted resources.
All of our classes have been reviewed by Kent ISD staff and core classes are aligned to Michigan Merit Curriculum and State Standards. This process provides students with up-to-date, relevant education to help them earn a local diploma and qualify for careers or post-secondary study.
Assessments and tests are selected in a similar way. Students will have both formative and summative assessments and multiple ways to demonstrate concept/standard mastery. Only the concepts students miss will require additional work. You won't spend time on what you already know.
What kinds of classes are available? (List of classes)
We offer approximately 50 different classes, with additional classes added each semester. You will find all the core courses needed for graduation - English, Math, Social Studies and Science - and some with multiple options. We also offer a variety of elective courses that will enrich your understanding of core concepts, help you pursue your interests and meet additional state requirements.
How do I learn to navigate this new online classroom?
All students participate in a required Online Orientation, which is a little like a driving lesson. You learn where things are in the learning system, how to communicate with your teachers and on the discussion boards, and how to turn in your projects and other schoolwork.
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How do students enroll?
MySchool@Kent is a service provided by Kent Intermediate School District (KISD). Students that are residents of the 20 local districts that are members of KISD are eligible for the services provided by MySchool@Kent.
If you'd like to explore the options available from this program, meet with your current high school counselor (in your district of residence) and ask the counselor to assist you.
Steps to enter the program:
- Enroll at a local KISD public high school
- Get a referral from your high school counselor to MySchool. That counselor will enroll you with MySchool@Kent
- Make and attend an intake appointment with MySchool
- Attend orientation and start learning
Can students be enrolled at any time throughout the year?
Yes, students can get started earning credit anytime during the school year.
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What if I don't have a computer at home?
MySchool@Kent provides a laptop for each student to use while in the program.
What about internet access at home?
MySchool@Kent can help with web access too. Students without high-speed access will be loaned a broadband wireless card to be used to complete their coursework.
What happens if a student has a problem accessing programs or with the laptop?
MySchool@Kent provides local technical support with our own Kent ISD computer techs. They can help diagnose and fix almost any computer or connection problems. They can even fix a broken laptop.
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It might be. We hope so. Please consider these features:
- MySchool@Kent offers a new way to learn, with a proven combination of face-to-face learning, engaging online projects and activities to complete, and career exploration options, all in a flexible schedule.
- Because most of the class work and requirements are completed online, this program offers maximum flexibility. You can learn when you want to. This flexibility means you can personalize high school helping you work around other electives, and activities, college courses, family responsibilities, and jobs.
- Our experienced Personal Online Instructors join our on-campus F2F Instructors and online Success Coaches to provide the kind of support you need when you need it. These caring adults are Michigan certified teachers who will get to know you and help you succeed in this new hybrid school.
- Students work at their own pace. This might mean faster in some classes, slower in others, but it's up to you. You're in control.
- Career and Business connections are just outside the door of our Learning Lab at the Tech Center, with 20+ programs representing hundreds of careers, internships, job shadows, and free college credit.