by Georgia Charter Schools Association
By Jane Chappell
Charter schools often receive bad press, but in reality they are the best kept secret in public education. A charter school can offer students flexibility to learn in different ways and experience unique opportunities.
Our child attends Provost Academy Georgia. This free, on-line school allows us to let our child travel the world, receive a high school diploma, have access to teachers, take state required testing and be a member of school sponsored clubs of particular interest.
During her time at Provost Academy Georgia she has traveled to 23 countries, 58 international cities, visited two world wonders, participated in the cultural festivals of several countries, attended a speech by the Pope and seen some of the world’s most famous works of art and extraordinary architecture.
The flexibility that allows her to do this has made her make learning come alive. In tenth grade, while reading Dante’s Inferno, she happened to be in Italy and was able to walk the streets of Dante’s beloved Florence, as well as make an extra stop in Ravenna to see where he finished The Divine Comedy and visit his tomb.
In Japan, not only was she able to attend a Japanese language school, cultural festivals and a Zen Buddhist temple, she was also able to visit Peace Park and the Atomic Bomb museum in Nagasaki. Reading about the devastation is one thing, visiting the actual site where the bomb was dropped and seeing the remains was a more powerful emotional experience than one can ever get from a textbook.
In Singapore she celebrated the Chinese New Year and the world famous Snow Festival in Sapporo, Japan. In France she saw the Mona Lisa, at the Vatican, the Sistine Chapel. In China she climbed the Great Wall, in Italy she toured the Colosseum, took a gondola ride in the canals of Venice, and had lunch next to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. In South Korea, she ate the delicious street foods of Busan, toured Neuschwantein Castle of Mad King Ludwig in Germany, saw the famous casinos of Monte Carlo in Monaco, visited the beaches of Nice and Cannes in the south of France and enjoyed the city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She learned to negotiate in the Pearl Market in Beijing, explored the beautiful city of Lucern, Switzerland and viewed Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
The flexible schedule has also allowed her to pursue her literary passion and travel in the US to attend lectures of some of her favorite authors.
Every child has different needs, different learning styles, different opportunities, charter schools are the perfect choice for those wishing to take advantage of their individual talents and opportunities.
“Experience, travel – these are as education in themselves” – Euripides
Click here for a slide show of Jane’s daughter’s travels.
Jane Chappell is the parent of a 12th grade student enrolled in Provost Academy Georgia, a virtual charter high school option open to students across the state of Georgia.