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Virtual Academy application opens Jan. 8 for 2024-2025 school year

Students currently in Grades 8-11 can apply to attend the Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) Virtual Academy program for the 2024-2025 school year. The application window opens 7 a.m., Monday, Jan. 8, and closes at 11:59 p.m., Friday, March 1. Late applications will not be accepted.

The program is virtual for students in Grades 9-12 and is managed by staff at the Robert D. Stethem Educational Center. Students who apply must meet minimum criteria to be accepted, and enrollment is not guaranteed. The application is linked here. Please note the application will not be accessible until Jan. 8. A Spanish application is linked here.  

Students enrolled in Virtual Academy must participate in the program for the entire school year. Students applying for Virtual Academy must have at least 25 or fewer unexcused absences to be considered or at least a 2.0 GPA to be considered; data will be from the 2023-2024 school year. Additional information, including courses available through Virtual Academy, is posted on the CCPS website at

Students who have either an IEP, 504 or EL plan on file with CCPS, are conditionally accepted pending the outcome of a school-based IEP/504 meeting. The team will determine if their services can be provided through the Virtual Academy program.

Program overview 

The CCPS High School Virtual Academy is an online educational program for students who are independent and motivated learners who want to continue their education in a virtual environment. Students interested in this program may include but are not limited to seniors needing four or fewer credits, students with school anxiety, students who require a flexible schedule to meet individual needs, students who prefer a nontraditional school setting, or a student apprehensive about in-person learning.

Program format

Students will complete assigned work through the APEX Learning digital platform. Students are expected to work independently for five hours daily, four days a week (Monday through Thursday), with 90 minutes per day of live/direct teaching through Zoom in Synergy. Students are expected to be available from 7:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Students should not have any other commitments during school hours. Tutoring support will be available to students during select periods during the school day.

Students in Virtual Academy will be enrolled in two credits per quarter, allowing them to earn eight credits per year. In other words, students will complete a year’s worth of work in one quarter. Advanced Placement (AP) classes will be a year-long course.  Students will need to provide transportation to their home school for all scheduled State assessments and after school activities.

Virtual Academy will offer grade level courses, Honors and select AP courses. Students will continue to have a graduation path, through the World Language completer or Business Management and Finance. Eligible students in Grades 11 and 12 participating in Virtual Academy can participate in the dual enrollment program through the College of Southern Maryland. 

Courses in Project Lead the Way and/or Career and Technical Education (CTE) completer programs will not be available in Virtual Academy (except for Business Management and Finance).  

Students will receive their report cards and diplomas through their home schools, as they are concurrently enrolled. Virtual Academy students can participate in sports or extracurricular activities (i.e., clubs, marching band, drama, etc.) at their home school, pending they meet the eligibility requirements. Students can attend homecoming dances, prom and extracurricular activities.

Students enrolled in the Virtual Academy must agree to remain for the completion of the school year. However, if a student shows a lack of interest for the program, due to failing grades or excessive absences, they may be removed from Virtual Academy and returned to their home school.

Please contact the coordinators Tiffany VanDyke at 301-932-6612 or Brooke Kohlhorst at 301-934-7391 with questions or for more information.

About CCPS

Charles County Public Schools provides 27,598 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school facilities in accordance with its Use of Facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).