New Covenant Academy, a Christian private school in Los Angeles, will be opening a 100 percent online program for middle and high school students for children of missionaries or pastors residing outside of Southern California. The school was founded 18 years ago with a Christian worldview, and since then, has sent numerous graduates to Ivy League and other prestigious schools.
"Through this program, we hope to serve the children of missionaries and pastors, who may not have as many educational opportunities," organizers of the program at New Covenant Academy (NCA) stated.
NCA points to several benefits of the program. The first is affordable tuition. NCA's regular tuition tends to be more affordable than the typical private school tuition in the U.S. However, the tuition for the online program is estimated to be about one-third of the $12,000 normal tuition for one school year at NCA. For missionaries who depend on financial support for most of their ministry, the burden of school tuition is not light. And that burden becomes even heavier if the parents decide to enroll their children in international schools or send their children overseas to study in the U.S. Hence, NCA decided to create and open this program with priority to missionaries' families.
But perhaps a more important aspect than the financial benefits is the fact that this program is 100% accredited under the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Hence, upon completion of this program, the students will be acknowledged as graduates of middle and high schools in the U.S., and can apply to universities in America. This inevitably would put these graduates at an advantage in comparison to students who were home schooled, or those who attended international schools in the mission field or schools in the U.S. that may not have WASC accreditation.
Some may be concerned about the standards of an online curriculum, but NCA has already been using this program for seven years for students in 6th to 12th grades. Missionaries in Kona, Hawaii who are affiliated with Youth with a Mission (YWAM) have also been using NCA's online program to educate their own children.
The platform is created so that it can run on PCs, Macbooks, Chromebooks, smart phones, tablets, and any technical device that can run flash. Hence, even people in South Korea or within the U.S. but outside of California can also study through this program. The program is technically limited to children of missionaries or pastors who live outside of California, but depending on each student's situation and background, if the school determines this program is necessary for the student, NCA is willing to take in such students as well.
NCA noted several precautions regarding this online program. First, coordinators strongly encouraged students enrolled in the online program to visit NCA's campus at least once each year and to take the school's summer program. This isn't a requirement, but staff hope to enhance what students have learned online through offline teaching and communication. Additionally, ESL is not available for 6th to 12th grades in the online program, so those who wish to enroll must be able to speak and understand English well enough to follow the curriculum. NCA plans to incorporate an ESL program in the future.
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This article has been translated. For the original in Korean, visit kr.christianitydaily.com.