Virtual schools growing trend in Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS -- Virtual schools are growing across the country, including right here in southern Nevada.

Enrollment has increased by 10 to 30 percent at many of these campuses, but experts say before you pull your kids from a traditional school, there are some key things to consider.

Devon Kisfalvi is 13 and about to enter eighth grade but just by talking to him, you can see he's quite mature for his age.

"It makes me proud of myself because I am actually doing great in school," Devon said.

But school hasn't always come easy for this teenager and it's not because he didn't get good grades, he did. He says he was distracted by a lot by kids who were not as focused as he was in the classroom.

"They are loud. They are screaming and the teachers focused on them and not on the kids," Devon said.

"He had great teachers but when you are dealing with 20 plus students, it's hard. It's really hard." Devon's mother Diana Kisfalvi said.

Kisfalvai decided to enroll Devon at Nevada Connections Academy four years ago.

She says this kind of online, personalized learning has worked for her son.

"If it is not working in regular setting, we need options to stay at home," Kisfalvi said.

"Sometimes parents come to us because they experience some bullying in public school maybe students not getting the attention they need," Nevada Connection's Principal Tonya Strozier said.

Strozier says even though the current waiting list to get into her school is at more than 500, online learning is not for everyone, especially students who aren't self-motivated.

She says parent involvement is also important in this kind of learning environment and kids who graduate on time tend to be enrolled at the school for four years or more.

"We have a lot of checks and balances in place because our intent is to set a student up for success," Strozier said.

Devon says he wants to become an engineer. He is focused and he appreciates a learning style that is focused on him.

"That would help me so when I go to college I wouldn't be struggling. I would be exceeding," Devon said.


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