Burke Virtual Academy

August 2020 Parent Edition

Burke Virtual Intro 8 12 20

Meet Our Coordinator, Dr. Kristin Edwards

It is an honor and privilege to serve our community as the Coordinator of the newly minted Burke Virtual Academy. I am excited about this opportunity to work alongside parents and teachers to personalize learning experiences for our students. It is my goal to see that all students experience academic growth and success in a supportive and flexible, digital learning environment.


Burke County has always been my home, and I currently reside in Morganton with my husband and two daughters. I began my career in education in 2005 with Burke County Public Schools. Prior to my time in administration, I taught at the elementary and middle school levels and served as an Instructional Technology Facilitator. I hold a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Lees-McRae College, a Master's degree in Instructional Technology and Media from Appalachian State, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Gardner-Webb University.


I believe the connection between home and school is paramount in the success of our students. As we embark on this school year together please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have.

Meet Our Guidance Counselor, Mrs. Connie Thompson

My name is Connie Thompson, I have been a school counselor with Burke County Public Schools since 2004. I obtained my Master's in Agency and School Counseling from Lenoir Rhyne College (now Lenoir Rhyne University). My career started at Foothills Mental Health, as a child therapist and then I began working for BCPS, as a school counselor at Drexel Primary School, which later became Drexel Elementary. After 10 years in the elementary setting, I accepted a position as a school counselor at East Burke High, my alma mater, and have enjoyed working there the past seven years. I am now excited to continue working for BCPS as the counselor for Burke Virtual Academy and I look forward to working with students K-12 all across the county. I am also a board member of the North Carolina School Counselor Association, where I currently serve as northwest region vice president. I am originally from Burke County, raised in Valdese, where I now reside with my husband, Andy, and my 3 precious fur babies; 2 dogs, Birdie and Ellie, and our cat Patches. I look forward to meeting each of you and wish you all much success this school year!

Student Attendance

Student attendance will be taken daily and will follow the guidance of NCDPI. An elementary or middle school student will be counted present for the day if they complete at least one of the following:


  • complete a daily check-in
  • participate in a live zoom session
  • submit an assignment via Seesaw, Google Classroom, or Canvas
  • phone contact with the student or parent


High school student attendance will be counted for each period or class in which the student is enrolled. A high school student will be counted present for the period or class if they complete at least one of the following:


  • complete a daily attendance check-in for each period
  • participate in a live Zoom/Google Hangout session
  • evidence of work in Google Classroom/Canvas
  • email correspondence with the teacher
  • phone contact with the teacher
Signing into Classlink at Home Using Optional activities with Classlink

Burke Can Support provides a variety of video support tutorials

BCPS Technology Department can assist with tech support on all BCPS provided devices. Call 438-2955 for assistance.

School Lunch

Beginning August 17th, 2020 nine elementary schools will be cooking and serving food to daycares daily (M-F) and will be open in the car rider lines from 11-1 Monday and Thursday.


Ray Childers, Hildebran, George Hildebrand, Valdese, Mountain View, Mull, Oak Hill, WA Young, and Glen Alpine.

From August 17th to August 28th all non-daycare families who would like free meals for their student can pick up the meals between 11-1 Monday or Thursday at the schools listed above. They will receive weekend food on Thursday.


Free and Reduced Lunch


We receive district funding based on the percentage of applicants approved for free and reduced lunch. We encourage all families to complete the online school lunch application. If your child was approved and received free or reduced lunch last school year you will need to complete a new form by Friday, September 25th in order to renew this service.


LINK TO APPLICATION

Elementary Updates

Elementary At Home Learning Coach

This document provides guidance for assisting your elementary-aged student at home.

We are happy to be serving nearly 1,000 elementary students through Burke Virtual Academy. Here is an overview of what you can expect during our first few weeks of school.


  • Kindergarten Virtual Academy teachers will be scheduling Dial-4 screenings and conferences during the week of August 17th.
  • 1st - 5th grade Virtual Academy teachers will be contacting families to schedule a beginning of year conference phone call or zoom session during the week of August 10th.
  • K-2 teachers will utilize Seesaw for assignments
  • 3-5 teachers will utilize Google Classroom for assignments
  • K-5 teachers will utilize Zoom for video conferencing
  • Teachers will seek input from you in order to establish a weekly schedule
  • Teachers will provide pre-recorded instructional videos for your child to preview independently
  • Teachers will provide times for live zoom sessions to assist students with their assignments
  • Student attendance will be taken daily via Daily Check-in, Zoom participation or contact/correspondence with the parent
  • Teachers will provide a weekly report on student progress


Average daily student time commitments:


  • Kindergarten - 60 minutes
  • First Grade - 75 minutes
  • Second Grade - 90 minutes
  • Third Grade - 100 minutes
  • Fourth Grade - 110 minutes
  • Fifth Grade - 120 minutes


What you can do:

  • Ensure your homeroom teacher has correct contact information: email, phone number, address, etc.
  • Sign-up for your child's Class Dojo
  • Provide a quiet place in your home for your child to complete assignments
  • Grades 3-5 sign up for Power School Alerts (see your home school's data manager for assistance with this)
  • Communicate regularly with your child's teacher
  • email burkevirtual@burke.k12.nc.us if you have not heard from your child's Virtual Academy teacher by Thursday evening, Auguts13, 2020.

Middle School Updates

Middle School At Home Learning Coach

This document provides guidance for assisting your middle school student at home.

We are happy to be serving nearly 630 students in our Middle School Virtual Academy. Our middle school Virtual Academy classes will be structured differently than our elementary classes. Each middle school will have a team of teachers per grade level that will serve our virtual students in each of the four content areas (Math, English/Language Arts, Science, Social Studies). Virtual elective courses include CTE/Business, PE, Health, and Art.


What to expect during the first few weeks of school:


  • Contact from your child's Virtual Academy teacher via phone or email
  • 6-8 students will utilize Google Classroom or Canvas
  • 6-8 teacher will utilize Zoom or Google Meet for live sessions
  • Teachers will provide a weekly schedule of assignments and due dates allowing your student to work at his/her own pace. This is referred to as asynchronous sessions.
  • Scheduled synchronous, or live, Zoom/Google Meet sessions for discussion or small group support
  • Attendance will be taken daily


Approximate daily time commitment:


  • 6th - 8th grade - daily average of 180 minutes


What you can do:

  • Ensure your homeroom teacher has correct contact information: email, phone number, address, etc.
  • Sign-up for your child's Class Dojo or Remind
  • Provide a quiet place in your home for your child to complete assignments
  • Sign up for Power School Alerts (see your home school's data manager for assistance with this)
  • Communicate regularly with your child's teacher
  • email burkevirtual@burke.k12.nc.us if you have not heard from your child's Virtual Academy teacher by Thursday evening, Auguts13, 2020.

High School Updates

High School At Home Learning Coach

This document provides guidance for assisting your high school student at home.

We are happy to be serving nearly 670 high school students through Burke Virtual Academy. Our high school courses, in most cases, will be delivered by a teacher from your child's home school. In structuring this way we are able to offer all core graduation courses in both CP and Honors, as well as offer a variety of AP and elective courses.


What to expect during the first few weeks of school:


  • Your child should receive email correspondence from each of his/her teachers with instructions for how to access their course and assignments.
  • scheduled office hours will be set for your child to reach out for additional support as needed
  • courses will offer a variety of synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) instructional opportunities allowing your child to work at his/her own pace
  • attendance will be taken daily


Approximate time commitment:


  • 9th through 12th grade - daily average of 180 minutes work time + live check-ins


What you can do:

  • Ensure all teachers have correct contact information: email, phone number, address, etc.
  • Identify possible methods of communication for each course and communicate regularly with teachers as needs or questions arise
  • Provide a quiet place in your home for your child to complete assignments
  • Sign up for Power School Alerts (see your home school's data manager for assistance with this)
  • email burkevirtual@burke.k12.nc.us if you have not heard from your child's Virtual Academy teacher by Thursday evening, Auguts13, 2020.

Additional Resources