Middle School Virtual Academy Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a Middle School Virtual Academy (MSVA) web page?
There is a new web page for the MSVA. At this time, there is an introduction to the Academy, a description of the A and B Day cohorts, and sample student schedules on the page. Please visit the web page often as it will be a place to find updated information.

If there is a problem with my child's schedule who should I contact?
If you are missing a schedule, first check your spam/junk folder in email. If you are missing your schedule, have an error, or do not see the A or B on the schedule, please contact your home base school's counseling department. Updated schedules have been emailed out Friday, September 4, 2020, to parent email addresses.

I see A day (or B day) on the schedule but don't students have class everyday?
They have learning experiences everyday. Students will have two days a week when they meet synchronously for their core classes (online via Google Meet) and three days when they meet asynchronously by checking in online and completing tasks, discussions, and/or assignments.

If your student has Spanish, French, or Geometry, then he/she will attend a Google Meet (Synchronously) on Wednesdays. If the schedule is compressed due a student holiday during the week, Wednesday classes will only have asynchronous learning activities. Wednesday teachers will be reaching out to students with their Google Classroom code within the next week.

Each class is 30 minutes of synchronous learning on the days they meet. That is shorter than a traditional class. How will that work to teach students?
In a traditional classroom there is lots of time for interaction between students and to do activities. After the 30 minute synchronous meet, the students may have additional work to do such as practice, application, or projects, similar to a traditional class.

What happens if there is a holiday on a Monday? What letter day is it when we come back?
If there is a holiday on a Monday, then Tuesday is A day, Wednesday is B day, Thursday is A day, and Friday is B day. Please see the division’s calendar if you have any questions related to A and B Days on each day of school.

I have a question about my child's schedule. For example, there is not an A or B on it, if they are missing a class or if they have two classes during one period. Whom do I contact?
Updated schedules were emailed out on Friday, September 4, 2020. Many of these issues have been resolved in the schedules emailed on Friday. If you still see an error on your student’s schedule, you should contact your student's home base school and speak with the counseling department.

I do not see the Enrichment class on my child's schedule. Are there enrichment classes?
We are currently working on ensuring all students have their four core classes on a schedule. Once the school year is underway that time will be used to provide enrichment opportunities or more focused support.

I do not see electives on my student’s schedule. Will my student have the opportunity to take electives?
At this time, all students are enrolled in their core classes and world language electives. The MSVA offers Spanish I, Spanish II, and French I as electives. Once the school year is underway we will be pursuing the possibility of adding elective opportunities to the schedule.

What should I do if my child misses a class or a day of school? If it is an asynchronous day does it count as an absence?
Attendance and participation are essential for students to succeed in the virtual program. According to guidance provided by the Virginia Department of Education, there must be “meaningful interaction” between the student and teacher in order for the student to be counted as present each day they are not physically in school. If a student is participating in distance learning and the teacher holds a face-to-face virtual class, the student is expected to attend at the designated time or will be counted absent.

On asynchronous learning days without a class meeting, students must have at least one meaningful interaction with each teacher on asynchronous days. Examples of meaningful interaction may include a student video conferencing with a teacher, e-mail communications between a teacher and student, participation in webinars and/or class discussion boards, and/or the student engaging in online assignments. As with a traditional school setting, students need to contact the teacher or check their google classroom for any missed assignments.

What will happen if we have two or more children who are taking online classes and they need to stream at the same time but our internet will not work.
A reliable internet connection is essential for students to attend and learn through the virtual academy. If there is an isolated incident where the internet access is down, please contact your student’s teacher and base school to let them know. If this will be an on-going concern, please talk with your child's home base principal regarding possible solutions.

If my child is going to be absent, whom do I notify?
Please have your students contact their teachers by email. You will notify your child's home base school regarding absences. All excuses should be sent to the home base school.

How do I get my child's textbooks?
Many of the textbooks in the virtual academy are available online. In some classes, print copies of workbooks are available. If you have need of those, please contact your student’s home base school to arrange to pick them up.

Whom do I call if my child is having technical dificulties with the Chromebook or if something on the Chromebook needs to be fixed?
Middle schools will operate a triage center in their building for Distance Learning students to bring their devices in for repair or replacement. The triage centers are open from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. every day. If you are new to the division and need a device, please go to the technology triage center at your home middle school to pick one up. While it is recommended that students go to their home base schools to get technical support, they can also visit the triage center behind James Wood Middle School on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The Technical Triage Center is also offering phone support. Parents and students may call 540-545-2434 ext. 88000. Voice messages may be left at this number. Technical support will respond as soon as they are available.