California Virtual Academies: A Model of School Choice or Failure?

Thousands of K-12 students in California go to online schools so that they can learn from home at their own pace, with one-on-one virtual instruction. The state’s largest network of online charter schools is California Virtual Academies, which boasts 15,000 students. They’re public schools, funded by tax dollars. However, the San Jose Mercury News reports that the network is actually run by a for-profit company called K12, based in Virginia, and that the company has reaped millions in public school funding by hiding behind non-profit status. The story also finds that California Virtual Academies is failing many of its students; fewer than half of the students who enroll earn diplomas.