Virtual Academy

What is an Option for Families Who do Not Want to Return to School?

Students in the San Diego Unified School District can go to Virtual Academy, but what is that?

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The San Diego Unified School District is providing an online option for those families who are uncomfortable going back to the classroom, but there seems to be some confusion over how it will work.

Online learning will not take place at your neighborhood school, or with your usual teacher, and neighborhood classmates. It will be different from what it was during the pandemic.

Those choosing not to go back to the classroom can enroll in the district’s Virtual Academy, a fully online program available to students at all grade levels. 

“The difference between the Virtual Academy and what was happening in the fall is that it’s not a hybrid program,” said school board president Richard Barrera.  “So, you will not be in a class at your school with some of your classmates in person and others on Zoom. Everybody in this class will be doing it virtually with the teacher.”

Students needing to be quarantined will not go to Virtual Academy. In that temporary situation, the district prefers to keep students with their own school, with their classes, and work will be sent home, but students and teachers could be connected through zoom.

“It's possible, especially at the elementary school levels, that we could have some teachers at the school who are working with the kids from that school who have been quarantined,” Barrera said the district is still working out details.   

Teachers who test positive for COVID-19 must quarantine too. Barrera said that is why districts are having trouble finding substitute teachers. The district will discuss that issue next week, possibly considering a pay raise for substitutes. But Barrera said the district is on track to fill other positions, including more counselors and school psychologists.

If you want to enroll your child in the online learning option, you can send an email at: virtualacademy@sandi.net.

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