Appleton eSchool
  Frequently asked questions
 
FAQs Who is eligible to enroll in online courses?

What types of courses can be taken online?

Can home school students take eSchool courses?

What if I am 20 years old or older and am interested in completing my diploma requirements?

When can students enroll in online courses?

What is the role of a mentor/coach?

Once a signed Course Request form has been received in the eSchool office what happens next?

What are Pace Charts?

What happens if a student doesn't keep pace in their coursework?

How are parents/guardians notified of a student's progress?

How many courses can I take at one time through Appleton eSchool?

What specifications do I need on my computer for online classes?

Who do I contact if I have guidance counselor related questions?

How much time will it take to complete a course?

How often should I expect to communicate with my teacher?

 
 

Who is eligible to enroll in online courses?
Any Appleton Area School District student grades nine through twelve may request enrollment in eSchool courses. Any student choosing to take an AP (advanced placement) course that is not available in their building may request enrolment in a VHS or APEX course facilitated through the eSchool A student may request an online course for various reasons: 1) To improve their grade for a previously taken course, 2) To recover the credit for a previously failed course, 3) To take a course not available at their school, 4) To take an additional course as an extension of their schedule, or 5) To take a course not available resulting from a schedule conflict. Special consideration will be given to students with significant life obstacles: i.e. dropouts, adjudicated and/or incarcerated youth, teen parents, homebound students, students with physical, mental or emotional difficulties, voluntarily withdrawn or expelled students, self-supporting youth, transient students, students in treatment programs. Appleton Area School District residents who have not completed their graduation requirements and have not reached the age of 20 are eligible to take courses through Appleton eSchool whether or not they are attending any other district school. (Age 22 for EEN)

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What types of courses can be taken online?
All academic courses required for graduation are available in online format as well as Advanced Placement courses and a wide variety of electives.

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Can home school students or private school students take eSchool courses?
Appleton Area School District residents that are Home School students or students attending a private school, may take up to two courses per semester and still maintain their Home School or private school status. Either or both of these could be online courses.

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What if I am 20 years old or more and am interested in completing my diploma requirements?
Adults over the age of 20 may be allowed to take online courses to complete their diploma requirements, if they are within 6 credits of earning their diploma and are either currently a resident of the Appleton Area School District or they earned most of their high school credits through one of the Appleton public high schools. These requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

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When can students enroll in online courses?
Although many students are likely to begin a course at the beginning of a semester, students can request enrollment in online courses on a rolling enrollment basis from September through February. Placement will be based on the availability within the requested course.

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What is the role of a mentor/coach?
A mentor/coach is an adult who has regular contact with the student, who provides support, encouragement and assistance as needed and also acts as a liaison with the online teacher.

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Once a signed Course Request Form has been received in the eSchool office what happens next?
Once a signed Course Request form has been received and processed, the student will find that the “status” of their request will change to “received signed request”.  Students can check this status by logging in to their account.  If the school year has not yet begun, registered students can expect to receive orientation instructions via email close to the first day of school.  During the school year, orientation instructions will generally be sent with 48 hours during the school week. 

This mini-course helps prepare students to be successful online learners. Students report it typically takes 2-3 hours to complete. Upon successful completion of the Orientation mini-course, the student will be enrolled in their chosen course.  Students typically have 2 weeks from the date of their First Day of Class session (during the school year) to determine if online learning is a good fit for them. Students can drop their online courses without consequences during this designated drop window.

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What are Pace Plans?
Pace Plans identify the due dates for all assignments. Students are expected to stay on pace in their individual course in order to meet their course completion goals set at the beginning of the online course. Assignment grades may be reduced if submitted beyond their due dates. Students generally have one chance to revise their pace chart during the regular school year.

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What happens if a student doesn't keep on pace?
If a student is not making sufficient progress toward their benchmarks by the end of the third week of the course, the Appleton eSchool staff will notify the student that they are being administratively dropped from the course. During those three weeks the teacher would be communicating with the student as well as the mentor/coach to help them to get on pace. Students are required to meet the minimum attendance requirement each calendar week. Minimum attendance is defined as appropriately completing and successfully submitting at least one current assignment for each online course every calendar week. A student that does not meet this requirement 3 times during a semester could be declared habitually truant. If there are extenuating circumstances interfering with the student's ability to meet the minimum attendance requirements, it is the responsibility of the parent/mentor/coach to communicate those circumstances to the online teacher and/or the eSchool office staff. Students have the option to revise their pace charts once per semester course, however the revised pace chart must fit the course availability. This information is contained in the student contract in which all students agree to and sign when taking an eSchool course.

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How are parents/guardians notified of a student's progress?
The guardian account is generated as part of the process of the student creating an eSchool account. An automated email is sent to the email addresses of the parent/guardian/mentor provided at the time of the account creation. If the parent/guardian does not receive an email, please contact the eSchool office right away. This account provides email progress report alerts and full access to the student's Grade book. By comparing the information in the student's Grade book to their pace chart the current status in the course is available at any time. Teachers issue progress reports at least once per month. The best way to contact a teacher is by email.

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How many courses can I take at one time through Appleton eSchool?
Students start by taking one course. After successfully completing one course a student can request taking two courses simultaneously. Students seeking full-time online status must follow the Appleton Area School District protocol for placement at a school other than their high school of residence.

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What specifications do I need on my computer for online classes? Test your PC now!
As long as you have Internet access, you can take online courses. While it is possible to take courses with dial-up connectivity, it will take a longer for pages to load. You might want to print a few lessons and work offline. You can then save and upload work when you are finished.

Browser Plug-ins
Sun Java Version 6 or higher (Download)
Sun Java 3D 1.3 or higher - Required in some courses (Download)
Flash 10 player (Download)
Acrobat Reader 7.0 or higher (Download)

PC Requirements
Pentium 4 or AMD Athlon (1000 MHz minimum, dual core recommended)
Minimum of 10 gigabytes free HDD space
128k internet connection. A broadband connection is recommended.
Windows XP, 7
Microsoft Office, Libre Office-free (Download), Open Office-free (Download)
2 GB Ram
12x CD-ROM (CD/DVD Recommended)
Display setting 1024x768 resolution
Printer required
Internet Browser:
FireFox (Download)
Google Chrome (Download)
Internet Explorer - version 6.0 or higher (Download)
A method to save work to a removable disk (Flash Drive recommended)
Audio: Sound card with speakers, microphone or headset (needed in some courses)

 

Macintosh Requirements
Power Mac G3 OSX (350 MHz)
Microsoft Office, Libre Office-free (Download), Open Office-free (Download)
A method to save work to a removable disk (Flash Drive recommended)
512 MB RAM
Minimum of 10 gigabytes free HDD space
12x CD ROM (CD/DVD Recommended)
128k internet connection. A broadband connection is recommended.
Display setting 1024x768 resolution
Printer required
Internet Browser:
FireFox (Download)
Google Chrome (Download)
Safari browser (Download)
Audio: Speakers and microphone or headset (needed in some courses)

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Who do I contact if I have guidance counselor related questions?
If you are attending an Appleton Area School District school, you should contact your assigned building guidance counselor. If you are only taking classes through the eSchool, the office staff will answer and direct your questions as needed.

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How much time will it take to complete a course?
A student can expect to spend just as many hours on an online course as they would spend if they were attending class on a traditional basis. For example if you are a reasonably good student, taking a semester course and plan to complete it in a traditional semester, you should expect to spend from 5-7 hours per week on the course. If you plan to complete a full credit course in one semester you would need to spend 10-14 hours per week on the course. If you do not have strong reading skills you may have to spend more time each week in order to maintain an appropriate pace.

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How often should I expect to communicate with my teacher?
A student can expect a response to emails by the end of the next school day after the email is received. Assignments are typically graded within 48 hours on school days. Email is typically the most efficient means to communicate with your online teacher. Some teachers provide regular office hours when they are available via web conference or phone. These may be used for tutoring, oral assessments or collaborative activities.

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