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Does Private Online High School Have an Attendance Requirement?

January 26, 2023

Online education is widely recognized for offering many benefits, chief among them the tremendous scheduling flexibility that allows families to travel together, and for students to pursue passionate interests alongside rigorous academics. 

Happily, this increased flexibility does not have to mean less structured instruction.   

online school attendance requirements

Students who enroll in an established, nationally ranked private online high school like Dwight Global Online School have a mix of live, scheduled online classes with asynchronous lessons—lectures, readings, and homework assigned to a student to complete whenever they wish during a prearranged time period.

The best private online high schools have requirements outlined clearly in the school handbook, including attendance requirements, proper online class etiquette, and other elements nurture connection, enhance learning, and add daily structure.

Some online schools offer 100 percent asynchronous instruction, which means all learning is done alone at home or on the road, without live class experiences. These students can choose when and where to watch videos or read lessons on their own. They have no mandatory online meetings with faculty or other students. 

At the nationally ranked Dwight Global, however, emphasis is placed on strong academics within a nurturing and connected community. This means students and faculty have synchronous classes –  scheduled times to meet, when all students log on to learn at the same time, no matter where in the world they are located. 

With these synchronous classes, a measure of flexibility still exists for students to register for an early morning or an evening class. This allows students in different time zones to select the best times for scheduled classes. Once a student selects their scheduled class time, they meet with their classmates and experienced faculty. They have class discussions just like in a brick and mortar school. 

Students at Dwight Global also meet their peers, faculty, and school leadership outside of class times. They sign up for clubs and extracurriculars, both of which offer leadership opportunities. 

Students may also have online study periods, homeroom, and advisory meetings, and uniquely at Dwight Global, are offered in-person opportunities at the Dwight Schools Global Network of physical campuses around the world. 

At Dwight Global, high school students also meet with college counselors, beginning in ninth grade. 

Live Class Attendance and Participation

Dwight Global live classes meet two to three times per week for 45 minutes, from Monday to Thursday. Dwight Global high school juniors and seniors who are enrolled in the online IB Diploma Program have classes that meet ten minutes longer, for 55 minutes each class. Dwight Global is the first school authorized by the International Baccalaureate classes to offer the IB DP online. The school also offers Advanced Placement classes, and a personalized academic pathway, as well. 

At Dwight Global, all live classes are taught in a seminar style, meaning that students are expected to come to class prepared to participate in discussion. To enable students to get the most out of their time together, class meetings are focused on discussion, collaboration, and exploration. Lectures and other independent activities are typically accomplished outside of class.

“The experience of attending live online classes in combination with asynchronous work amplifies the learning exponentially,” said Dwight Global’s Associate Head of School Shannon Hoffman. 

“Without the restriction of geographic location, students and teachers have the opportunity to exchange ideas and tap into an incredibly diverse collection of perspectives,” Hoffman said. “Mentorships and lifelong friendships can and do take seed when students attend live classes.”

Because class discussions are a central and distinctive component of learning in Dwight Global courses, students are expected to attend every class meeting.
Cameras On

At Dwight Global, students are also expected to attend meetings with their video cameras on. When cameras are on, faculty are better able to gauge learning, and students themselves recognize that class participation and collaboration contribute to a classroom culture geared towards teaching and learning.

Recorded Classes

Class meetings in Zoom are all recorded by teachers when more than one student is present, and recordings become automatically available in students’ learning management systems. 
Whenever a student is absent from class, that student must view the recording of the missed class, and follow up with the teacher to schedule a meeting or complete activities as needed, or as otherwise agreed with the instructor.

If a student is unexpectedly absent from a class—meaning an absence that was unplanned and unreported to the teacher prior to the class–the student is also responsible for submitting a form to school faculty. Students who are absent without excuse may be unable to fully make up for missed experiences, leaving themselves less prepared for subsequent independent work, classes, and assessments.
Class attendance is a vital component of the learning experience in all Dwight Global courses. For more information on this established, accredited private online high school, visit Dwight Global Online School.