FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Updated September 25, 2020

General | Registration & Enrollment | Teachers | Students | Technology | Meals

GENERAL

Will the STPPS Virtual School follow the same schedule as STPPS brick-and-mortar schools?
Yes. The virtual school will begin and end at the same time as the STPPS brick-and-mortar schools and follow the same calendar for holidays.

I don't feel comfortable sending my child to school in person due to COVID-19. Is the STPPS Virtual School an option for my child?
The STPPS Virtual School is an option for parents who do not feel comfortable sending their child to school in person. Students will be expected to remain enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School for a minimum of one semester.

Is the STPPS Virtual School a response to COVID-19?
Before the COVID-19 situation began, plans were being made to open a full-time virtual school to help meet the changing needs of our families and community. The coronavirus re-confirmed the need for a virtual school option, and we were able to expedite our plans to launch the virtual school in time for the 2020-2021 school year. The STPPS Virtual School provides flexibility and benefits for our students and families in various situations beyond the coronavirus.

Is the STPPS Virtual School the same as distance learning mentioned as a possible learning model being planned for schools depending on the phase the state is in when school starts?
No. The STPPS Virtual School is a full-time virtual school that students enroll in to receive instruction through an online learning platform. With the distance-learning model being planned as an option if students cannot return to school in person, students remain enrolled in their traditional school, and learning is shifted to distance learning with their teacher through Google Classroom. The STPPS Virtual School began at the start of the school year, and operation will not be dependent on state phases or learning model the rest of the district is using at a given time.

My child has an IEP. Are special education services provided through the STPPS Virtual School?
If a parent is considering this virtual option for a student with an IEP or IAP, a team meeting must be held to determine how a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) can be provided through a virtual learning platform. Parents and caregivers who complete a registration application for a student who has an IEP or IAP, regardless of classification, will receive a phone call to schedule a meeting with a special education consultant to discuss the IEP and how the student can receive special education services through a virtual learning platform.

I have not received an email or phone call about orientation. Is my child enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School?
If you completed registration for the STPPS Virtual School and have not received an email or phone from the school, please submit your information through the STPPS Virtual School Questions Google Form (Grades K-5 | Grades 6-12). We need to verify the registration is complete and make sure we have the correct email address on file.

My high school student logged into the online learning platform, and the wrong classes are listed. How do we correct the schedule?
Schedules are still being finalized for high school students. Placeholder courses may appear in the online learning platform that aren’t the courses students selected.

REGISTRATION & ENROLLMENT

Can I register my child for the STPPS Virtual School after the deadline?
Yes. Students can be registered after the deadline.

How do I enroll in the STPPS Virtual School?
Register online at www.stpsb.org/register. Students enrolling in STPPS for the first time and students transferring to the Virtual School from another STPPS school can register online. STPPS Virtual School will be an option in the “Attendance Zone” dropdown menu of schools when you are completing the registration form.

My child is transferring to the STPPS Virtual School from a school in another district or a private school. Do I have to provide any additional information to complete enrollment?
After completing the online registration application, please send the name of the school the student previously attended, whether it was a private or public school and whether it was in Louisiana or another state, to shelly.morris@stpsb.org.

How long does my child have to remain enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School?
Students are expected to remain enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School for a minimum of one semester.

Who is eligible to enroll in the STPPS Virtual School?
Students in grades K-12 who reside in St. Tammany Parish are eligible to enroll in the STPPS Virtual School.

What documents are needed to register?
To complete the registration process, you will need the child’s State Certified Birth Certificate, Immunization (Shot) Records, Social Security Card, and Proof of Residency (3 residency documents are required). Get more registration information

My child is currently enrolled in a traditional STPPS school. Do I have to contact the school to withdraw before I can enroll in the STPPS Virtual School?
You do not have to contact the school to withdraw before registering for the virtual school. When you complete the STPPS Virtual School registration form, students will automatically be transferred from their current school to the virtual school.

What are my choices for my child’s education in STPPS for the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year? 
At this time, parents and caregivers have two options in the St. Tammany Parish Public School System:

        1. Enroll in the STPPS Virtual School
          This is a full-time virtual school with an online learning platform. Students would remain in this virtual school for at least a semester.
        2. Attend a traditional brick and mortar STPPS school
          Students in traditional schools could attend in person, hybrid (partially in person and partially distance learning), or full-time distance learning depending on the phase the state is in at the time and the grade level of the students. There is a possibility of schools alternating between those models as the situation evolves. Parents do not choose between these learning models. The School System will determine the learning model based on safety guidelines and protocols.

How do I drop my child from the STPPS Virtual School?
To drop from the STPPS Virtual School, please contact the school in your district to request a transfer.

How do I check the status of my application for the STPPS Virtual School?
To check your STPPS Virtual School Application status, email robin.herdliska@stpsb.org.

TEACHERS

How are teachers involved?
Louisiana certified teachers, counselors, and administrators provide online support.

How will teachers monitor students?
Teachers will monitor students through three ways: attendance (4 hours of online work per day), progress towards weekly goals, and academic proficiency.

STUDENTS

Can virtual school students participate in sports and school activities?
Limited extracurricular activities and clubs may be offered through the STPPS Virtual School. Sports will not be offered. Students will not be eligible to participate in sports, clubs, or extracurricular activities at brick-and-mortar schools while enrolled in the virtual school.

My child is a high school athlete. While he/she lose their athletics eligibility if they transfer from the STPPS Virtual School back to their brick-and-mortar high school?
If the student transfers from the STPPS Virtual School to his/her high school in their attendance zone, they may be eligible. If at any time a student transfers from one LHSAA member school to another LHSAA member school in the same attendance zone, the student shall become immediately ineligible for one calendar year from the date of enrollment/attendance in the second school.

Can students receive a high school diploma and graduate from STPPS Virtual School?
Yes. Students are eligible to receive either the Louisiana TOPS University Diploma or the TOPS TECH Career Diploma.

Can students enroll part-time?
No. The virtual school is a full-time school. Students cannot be enrolled in another school or homeschool while being enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School.

Do students enrolled in the virtual school have to take state assessments?
Yes. Students enrolled will be required to take state-mandated assessments.

How does attendance work?
Students are expected to work a minimum number of hours each week. Attendance will be logged through educational software. Students who do not meet a minimum number of hours per day will be marked absent and required to complete makeup work.

How are grades given and promotion determined?
Grades and promotions follow the same STPPS Pupil Progression Plan as traditional STPPS schools.

How many hours will students work each day?
Students will work a minimum of four hours each day (20 hours per week).

How do high school students select electives?
High school students should select three elective courses from the course catalog on the virtual school website and email the guidance counselor with the selections at allison.hnatyshyn@stpsb.org.

Do elementary students have to work on the computer all day?
Students in grades K-5 will receive a workbook containing screen-free activities that will be completed and uploaded, so they are not working on the computer for all of their required schoolwork.

Does the time students work each day have to be consecutive, or can it be spread throughout the day?
No. The required time a student works each day can be spread throughout the day or spaced apart with breaks.

How much assistance will my child need from me while completing school work?
Every student is different and will require different levels of support. Younger students will typically need more support and assistance than older students. The parent or caregiver will serve as the learning coach for their child. Specific directions for the learning coach are provided within the online learning platform for grades K-5. The responsibilities of all parents and caregivers are listed in the school handbook and on the agreement form.  

What learning platform will be used?
Edgenuity, developed in partnership with Accelerate Education, is the platform for grades K-5. This is where the courses are located and where parents and students can also locate due dates and read class announcements. Edgenuity is the platform for grades 6-12. This is where the courses are located and where parents and students can also locate due dates and read class announcements.

Will my child’s teacher provide real-time instruction through video?
Instruction through the STPPS Virtual School is primarily through an online learning platform that allows students to work independently. Each school day, teachers will be available for tutoring and assistance. Teachers will also monitor each student’s progress, take attendance, and grade assignments as needed.

If my child attends the virtual school for the fall semester then transfers back to the brick-and-mortar school, will they be able to participate in sports in the spring? 
Schools must follow the LHSAA guidelines. The majority of students will be immediately eligible to participate.  If you are uncertain or have a unique situation, please email Supervisor of Administration Christian Monson at christian.monson@stpsb.org.

Will eighth-grade students be able to earn high school Carnegie credits?
Yes, the Carnegie unit courses available to eighth-grade students are:

Students must be aware they are beginning their high school transcript. Students enrolled in Carnegie courses also must follow the attendance policy for semester courses.

How do I choose a Carnegie unit course for an eighth-grade student?
Please email Allison Hnatyshyn at allison.hnatyshyn@stpsb.org.

TECHNOLOGY

How do I log into the online learning platform?
For grades K-5, you will receive an email from Edgenuity containing your username and password to log into Accelerate Learning.

For grades 6-12, you will access Edgenuity by logging into Moodle. The username and password are the same for Moodle and Edgenuity. The student's username is the 8-digit student ID number.

What are the technical requirements for a laptop or tablet?
The online learning platform is web-based, so the minimum technical requirements are reliable internet access and an up-to-date browser on a desktop computer, laptop, or tablet. A webcam, speakers, and a microphone or headset are needed for online meetings with teachers. All students will need the ability to take a picture or scan and upload documents.

What kind of laptop should I buy for my child?
Students will be provided with a Chromebook as soon as they are available. If a parent wants to purchase a computer for their child, any desktop, laptop, or tablet with an up-to-date browser, speakers, and a microphone or headset, and internet access will be acceptable.

Is a computer or other required technology provided?
Families have to commit to providing their own technology and reliable internet access at this time. Schools are distributing Chromebooks to students as they are received by our district. Chromebooks were ordered in March for every student in STPPS, including those who attend traditional brick-and-mortar schools and the STPPS Virtual School. Due to international demand, they have been on backorder. Families in need of a computer are asked to complete the Computer Waiting List form to be placed on a waiting list for a device. Households who have a critical need will be accommodated first.

My child does not have access to a computer. How can I get on a waiting list for a School System Chromebook?
If your child does not have access to a computer at home, please fill out the Computer Waiting List form to be placed on the waiting list for a device. We are trying to accommodate households who have a critical need first, and Chromebooks will be distributed when they are received by our district.

Does my child need a Google email to communicate with his/her teacher?
Parents and caregivers need to complete the Google and Chromebook Form for students to be issued a school-based Google account to communicate with their teachers through video conferences during teacher office hours. This is the same form that we will use for Chromebooks, and it will help expedite the distribution process when they are available. Parents and caregivers need to only submit the last page of the form (signature page) by email to stppsvirtual@stpsb.org or drop it off in person at the STPPS Virtual School satellite office (23648 Sparrow Rd., Mandeville), Harrison Curriculum Center (706 W. 28th Ave., Covington), or the Brooks Education Complex (2544 Sgt. Alfred St., Slidell). The Student Device Damage Coverage can be paid on MyPaymentsPlus.

How do I use a Chromebook if I do not have internet access at home?
Internet service options may be available through your cellular service company or local provider. The service providers below can assist with hotspot options in areas where broadband internet access is not an option. A mobile hotspot allows you to connect one or multiple devices to the internet. These options will be independent of the school system: AT&T, Boost Mobile, FreedomPOP, Karma, Net10, Netzero, Total Wireless, Straight Talk, T-Mobile, Xfinity, and Verizon.

Who can I contact for technical assistance with registering online?
Contact the STPPS IT Department Helpdesk at 985-898-6416 or helpdesk@stpsb.org. They will only provide technical assistance and cannot answer specific questions about the STPPS Virtual School.

MEALS

Will students enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School be able to receive school meals?
Drive-thru pick up of Grab & Go meals will be available for students enrolled in the STPPS Virtual School and students in the hybrid model on days they are not on campus in person and are participating in distance learning at home. Parents/caregivers MUST complete and submit a meal consent form for each child and select a pick-up location before picking up Grab & Go meals for the first time. Complete the form and get information.

My child received free or reduced meals during previous school years. Can he/she receive free or reduced meals through the STPPS Virtual School?
Yes, the USDA has temporarily granted free meals for STPPS students. Free meals include breakfast and lunch – both in-school and Grab & Go for hybrid and STPPS Virtual School students. While the free meals are temporary, parents must complete the 2020-2021 Free and Reduced Meal Application to continue benefits. The Grab & Go Meal Consent Form is still required before picking up grab & go meals for the first time. Free meals are for STPPS students ONLY.