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San Benito
February 20, 2024

Hollister district starts independent study program for families preferring online instruction

Courtesy of the Hollister School District:

When schools reopen in August, some parents may decide that they prefer to keep their children in an online program. As such, the Hollister School District has recently created the Hollister Rigorous Independent Study Education (R.I.S.E) Academy.

As schools begin to renovate the traditional classroom setting, the R.I.S.E. Academy will maintain a consistent, rigorous, and distinct educational option for families. The R.I.S.E. Academy is an Independent Study program designed by the Hollister School District to provide students and families an alternative to the traditional classroom setting.

The purpose of the R.I.S.E. Academy is to provide a personal learning plan for students which supports, encourages, and expects mastery of the California State Standards. R.I.S.E. Academy aims to develop creative and complex thinkers . Students will become effective communicators with the ability to advocate for themselves. R.I.S.E. strives to produce empowered, independent learners.

Superintendent Diego Ochoa said, “Each student in the R.I.S.E. Academy will be assigned a high-quality master teacher to oversee their academic progress. Teachers will be responsible for establishing the meeting schedule to review and assess student work, providing appropriate support, and maintaining student work.”

The R.I.S.E. Academy is designed as a home-based program offering flexible ways to address a student’s individual needs, interests and styles of learning. Students will have regularly scheduled appointments with their teacher either virtually or face to face for a minimum of one hour per week. During that time, students turn in completed work, take assessments, get help with coursework, receive instruction, and review the assignments for the following week.

Students with an I.E.P. are eligible for the R.I.S.E. Academy. However, it must be determined by the I.E.P. team that Independent Study is an appropriate placement for the student.

The R.I.S.E Academy is an individualized alternative education program designed to teach the knowledge and skills of the California State Standards. Students in grades Tk – 5th will use District and State adopted curriculum. Benchmark Advance will be used in English Language Arts. Eureka Math will be used in Math. Both Benchmark Advance and Eureka Math provide a rigorous curriculum and are aligned with California State Standards.
For students in grades 6 – 8, the District has planned to partner with a leading provider of online learning, Edgenuity. Using Edgenuity, the District will provide opportunity and access to high-quality education using technology to improve student outcomes. Superintendent Diego Ochoa said, “Kudos to Kip Ward and his Student Services team for developing this outstanding new option for our students.” For more information, contact Kip Ward, Director of Student Services at [email protected].

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