What is my role as the parent?

How can YOU ensure that your child is successful?

Keystone: The Basics

Your student is now enrolled with The Keystone School. Keystone is a self-paced and independent study program. What does this mean?

Self-paced: Students have 24/7 access to their online courses and up to 12 months from the date of enrollment to complete their classes.

Self-paced, however, does not mean that a student who only spends two days a week working on his/her courses, or a student who only spends 30 minutes each day on his/her courses, will still be able to finish at the same time as a student who is working full school days.

Independent Study: Students go through the interactive lessons and complete the corresponding assignments on their own. They do not have on-demand support from a teacher or tutor but still have a teacher who they can contact via phone or email with questions. Teachers have 1 business day to respond to students.

What does this mean for your student? He/she is responsible for his/her own success!

Does this mean that he/she is completely alone and on their own? Of course not. Your student has a wealth of resources here at Keystone:

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Your student also has you. Keystone parents also have an important role to play. It is your job to hold your child accountable.

Parents = Accountability Partners

Think about how different Keystone is from a traditional public school. In public school, your student goes to school for a certain number of hours. They are in specific classes at specific times. Their teacher assigns tasks to them and tells them when they need to have these tasks completed by. If your child doesn't complete the task by that date, they either lose points, or they get a zero.

Now, let's think about Keystone. Your student can work on his/her courses in the morning, at night, or both. They can work on Math first one day and maybe Science first the next day. If they enroll in classes on May 1st of this year, then they have until May 1st of the following year to complete all of their tasks. It doesn't matter if some are completed on June 14th or not until April 29th---as long as everything is completed by the one year due date.

Now, think about your child. How do you think he/she is going to handle all of this freedom and responsibility? Be honest with yourself. You know your child best. You know his/her strengths, and you know his/her weaknesses. Also, keep in mind that just because your son/daughter was a good student in his/her public school, it does not mean that he/she will automatically be successful with Keystone. Successful Keystone students are self-motivated, organized and able to effectively manage their time.

How can you make sure that with all of the freedom Keystone offers to your student that he/she is actually doing what they are supposed to?

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How can you make sure this doesn't happen to your student?

We provide you with two ways to check on your student's progress:

  • Progress Reports: These are emailed to the main parent email address that we have on file every other Monday evening; they can only be sent to one email address. The progress reports show you your student's average grade in each class as well as the percentage he/she has completed of that course. You will want to compare the current % complete in each course to the % on the previous report. If your student had 42% of his/her Social Studies class completed on the last report, you will want to make sure that the current % complete is not still 42%. If it is, you will know he/she has not been working in that class.
  • Parent Observer Account: Your username and password for this was emailed to you within 24/48 business hours after your child's enrollment. When you log into your observer account, you have access to your student's grade book for each class (updates live) so you can see exactly which assignments have been submitted and when they were submitted. Once graded, you will see not only the student's score on that assignment but also the teacher's feedback. In addition to the grade book, you can also see the last time your student accessed each course by clicking on Parent Dashboard (upper right corner) and then clicking on your student's username.
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#1 Way to check progress

A common frustration from parents is that even though they can see their child's grade book, they don't know if their student is doing enough work.

How can this be remedied?

It's simple. Set the rules.

1. Sit down with your student and have him/her log into his/her online homeroom.

2. Go into the Resource and Orientation Center (this is listed with your student's courses) and review the information on creating a schedule in Section 1.

3. Once you and your student have reviewed this information together, refer to the Suggested Hours chart to come up with an ideal completion date for his/her courses.

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4. Once an end date has been agreed upon, you will need to go into the Teacher's Office in each one of your child's courses and create a schedule. Remember, there is a step-by-step video on how to create a schedule in the Resource and Orientation Center.

5. Print out TWO copies of each schedule. One copy is for your student to keep and use as he/she is working on the courses. The other copy is for you to keep.

Here is an example of a schedule:

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As you can see, the scheduling tool only assigns Wednesday and Friday due dates. This does NOT mean that Wednesday and Friday are the only days that your child can submit work. It is simply a guide for your student and tells them what needs to be completed by which date to remain on track.

Therefore, by Wednesday 5/18 I need to have my 1.02 Unit 1 Section 2 Quiz and my 1.03 Unit 1 Section 3 Quiz completed. I can do them both on Wednesday 5/18 or maybe I will take the Section 2 quiz on Monday 5/16 and the Section 3 quiz on Wednesday 5/18--IT DOES NOT MATTER AS LONG AS THEY ARE BOTH COMPLETED BEFORE 5/18.

6. Every Sunday morning (does not have to be this specific time) get your copies of the schedules and log into your parent observer account. Look at each course's grade book and compare it to that course's schedule? Did your student do what he/she was supposed to this week? If not, write down what tasks were not completed.

7. Sit down with your student and discuss your findings. If they completed all of their scheduled tasks, congratulate them! Maybe make a deal with them that if they also complete all of their tasks the next two weeks, you will take them out for a special dinner or something else they would enjoy! If your student did not complete all of their assigned tasks, ask what prevented them from doing so. If this becomes a common occurrence, you may need to revise their goal end date (push it back a bit to lessen their workload) or you may need to come up with other consequences: loss of cell phone/computer privileges, put a lock on your software, weekend study time, extra chores, etc.