Of the more than 150 students that enrolled in the Louisiana Connections Academy full-time virtual K-12 public charter school due to the historic summer floods of 2016, more than 135 have made the school their permanent home and one of them is Cassidy Ainsworth.
The storms that impacted many of the central Louisiana region left public schools closed and parents scrambling to find their kids temporary or new schools while rebuilding their personal and professional lives. The scramble went across public, parochial and private school lines, said LACA Communications Director Michael Marsh.
Parent Shawn Ainsworth of Livingston Parish and her family was one of the impacted. She didn’t know what to expect when enrolling her daughter Cassidy, a senior, and other daughter, Alison, 10th grade, in an online school but then she heard LACA’s radio ad.
“We talked with several educators in and outside our family and only heard positive comments about LACA and virtual schooling,” said Shawn.
So the experiment was on, and soon the family that had only known traditional brick-and-mortar schools found LACA to be a blessing.
“The staff at LACA was extremely helpful in answering all our questions and walking us through the enrollment process. It was a challenging transition for the family to go from a traditional school to an online school but both of our girls are now very comfortable and excelling in school.”
Louisiana Connections Academy, a statewide provider of free high-quality, highly accountable virtual K-12 schooling, opened its online doors to any student in any K-12 grade impacted by the floods with the blessing of the Louisiana Department of Education.
“We wanted to offer a sense of normalcy for families affected by the flooding through our online school,” said Superintendent Dr. Lonnie Luce. “We were proud to offer families a bit of comfort and relief during these trying times.”
Cassidy is thankful LACA was able to help her during her final high school year.
“I remember seeing pictures of my former high school,” said Cassidy. “The water receding caused our parish school superintendent to close the school indefinitely. As a senior in high school, with aspirations to play tennis in college, I needed to complete high school in a timely manner in order to start my freshman year on time. Enrolling in LACA was welcomed but the adjustment did take time. There are live lessons and other interactive resources but there is also a lot of independent learning.”
The adjustment came quickly though as the senior standout is making straight A’s and using her new expertise to prepare for college.
“In adapting to the independent learning I have fine-tuned skills that I think will help me tremendously in college,” said Cassidy.
Cassidy has narrowed her college search to 12 Christian universities where she is aiming to continue her tennis career and draw closer to biblical studies. These days, she is extremely grateful for the small things that make everyday life normal, like her tennis coach purchasing her new shoes after her shoes molded or her father’s co-worker buying her a new Third Day Christian rock CD after she lost hers in the flood.
Stories like Cassidy’s is what our school is all about,” said Dr. Luce. “We provide an environment where parents can be very involved in their child’s education, but we also offer students like Cassidy the opportunity to excel and prepare for today’s technological world with the skills they need for lifelong learning.”
Louisiana Connections Academy encourages parents and students unhappy with their 2016 school experience to investigate enrolling right now, as the school year enters the holiday break.
“Don’t suffer. Join us!” said Community Liaison Shelly Centanni. Call Ms. Centanni at (225) 567-3294 or visit http://www.LouisianaConnectionsAcademy.com for more information.