2014 Apex Learning Award of Excellence Recipients
District: Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District (Mat-Su), AK
Location: Palmer, AK
Setting: Urban, suburban, rural
Program: Mat-Su iTech
Environment: Blended and Virtual Learning
Program Type: Original credit, credit recovery, Advanced Placement, non-credit support
Size of School: 1,200 students
Success: In its second year of implementation,
Mat-Su iTech has built a high level of success — the program has received recognition from the district and state level for its ability to provide students with access to high-quality educational curriculum that transcends geographic barriers. Since the start of the 2012–2013 school year, Mat-Su iTech students have completed more than 1,000 courses through their blended and virtual learning programs, including Advanced Placement and foreign language courses previously unavailable to Mat-Su students.
Goals: By providing students with access to rigorous, standards based instruction while eliminating the logistical barriers to quality education, administrators in Mat-Su iTech work to increase the graduation rate, provide academic options to students unable to attend school, expand course offerings, and provide teachers with additional resources to support student learning.
Background: Administrators at Matanuska-Susitna Borough School, a district the geographic size of West Virginia, created Mat-Su iTech to offer course flexibility and expand choices for students. Students across the district enroll in Mat-Su iTech online courses as part of their regular school schedule. Because the courses are offered online either at their school site or from home, students in rural locations have the same educational opportunities as the district’s urban and suburban students. The rich curriculum affords students the option for credit recovery, course enhancement, or program acceleration.