Let's look at the factors high school students need to consider when choosing between on-campus and online programs. These include convenience, scheduling, safety, curriculum, social atmosphere, cost, technological requirements, learning style, and school accreditation. Whether you're being bullied at school, live in a remote rural area, or simply have a lifestyle that's not conducive to a traditional school schedule, an online program can offer you a practical alternative for earning a high school diploma. However, these programs aren't right for everyone.
An online high school program offers the convenience to study and take classes from anywhere that you have a computer and an Internet connection. This is particularly useful for students who live in remote areas or travel frequently for athletics or other extracurricular activities.
Related to convenience is the benefit of flexible scheduling, which offers another major advantage for young people whose lives are too busy for traditional school. Although some online courses do require students to attend live meetings in real-time, much of your studying can be done asynchronously, or on your own schedule.
Safety is a top concern for parents. Bullying, whether it involves physical threats or social isolation, is a growing problem at U.S. high schools. Students who suffer from extreme bullying may feel safer completing high school diploma programs from the safety of their homes.
Some high school students may wish to finish early. Some online high school programs allow students to complete work at an accelerated pace. This may be beneficial for students who are ready to move on to college or the workplace.
What about classroom materials? According to the U.S. Department of Education, many online high school programs can offer students access to higher quality learning materials. The quality of your teachers and materials in an online program will not be limited by the quality of your local public schools, which can vary widely from region to region.