Advantages Of Online Middle School

Is Online School Appropriate for My Middle Schooler?

Selecting the right school system for your middle schooler is one of the most important decisions you can make as a parent, but it is not one that will likely come easily.

As instruction and curriculum methods move further into the digital age, it’s no surprise that online schooling is becoming more common, even for learners who are just starting kindergarten. Online learning can be a worthy substitute to traditional brick-and-mortar schools for teenagers of all backgrounds, ages, and learning capabilities, but is it the right option for your teen?

This idea is great in general since it lets learners learn from home and provides a real solution for homeschooling that was not there before. It enables parents to take the lead in their teen’s education with the help and support of a certified instructor.

We are in the age of change. Technology is the fuel that is pushing this change forward. Some schools, similar to businesses, feel they must have an online presence so as to compete. Others, determined to hang onto the traditional ways, stay in the comfort of their brick-and-mortar environments, refusing to believe that online education is the best solution.

In this article, we focus on reasons why online school is appropriate for your middle schooler.


The middle grades are a crucial transition when many changes occur intellectually, socially, and physically. Some would argue that pulling teens out of regular brick-and-mortar school systems during this critical time is unfavorable to their success in school. They require real-world interactions with peers to grow psychologically.

Online learning does let learners interact in the online environment.

Advocates of the online school model claim that, so long as learners have occasional outings with their same-age peers, they will thrive socially in the same way their brick-and-mortar school counterparts do. Others fear that such limited social contact in the real world will also discourage real growth socially because of too much screen time removed from the real world.

Benefits of Online Middle School

Socializing with colleagues is a huge part of high school and an important part of your teenager’s development. Prior to making a decision to enroll your teen in an online school, take a look at ways through which socialization is crucial to your learner, and begin to think of ways that you can meet this requirement outside of traditional school.

If your teen depends on sports for a social outlet, look for sports programs in the community that your teenager can be a part of. Allow time for your teenager to meet with old friends and make new acquaintances. Volunteerism, clubs, and teen programs can be great ways for your teenager to socialize. Also, you may need to consider joining a network of distance learning learners and parents.

If you are selecting distance learning as a way for your teen to get away from a negative peer group, be prepared to provide replacement activities. Put your teenager in situations where he can meet new friends and discover new interests.

Teens in the middle grades do require real-world interactions. Nevertheless, some studies have shown that teens who are homeschooled do just as well or better than traditional learners, as long as the support is there to help them reach the academic and social goals, they require to be successful and thrive.


Prior to enrolling your teenager in an online school, ask yourself: “Will this be a workable situation for our family?” Realize that online learning means your learner will be at home during the day. Notably, having a stay-at-home parent can be a great asset, particularly if your teen wants supervision. Many parents enroll their teens in an independent study program because of poor behavior, only to discover that the behavior is much worse when the teenager has full reign in an unsupervised home.

Although their behavior is not an issue, consider your teen’s other needs. Usually, online learning programs cannot offer the full range of programs that traditional schools provide. If your teen needs additional tutoring in Algebra, for instance, will you be able to hire someone to help or offer the assistance yourself?

Additionally, do not underestimate the need for your own involvement in an online learning program. Parents are often responsible for monitoring their teen’s work and participating in regular meetings with teaching supervisors. If you are already bogged down with responsibilities, helping your teenager find success through distance learning may be overwhelming.


To be successful with an online learning program, teens need to be independently motivated to do their work. Consider whether or not your teenager will be able to stick to his studies without an instructor looking over his shoulder. If a teenager is doing poorly in school because he is not motivated to turn in work, the probabilities are that the work would not get done at home either.

Prior to enrolling your teenager, determine if it is reasonable for you to expect him to remain focused on school for several hours a day without someone to guide him. Some teenagers are not developmentally ready for such responsibility.

If you feel that your teenager is up to the challenge, be sure to discuss the choice of using an online learning program with your middle schooler. Often teenagers are more motivated to do the work if the change in schooling is their idea. Nevertheless, if you have decided that online schooling is best, discuss the reasons with your teenager and also listen to what he or she has to say. Work together to set the regulations and terms of the arrangement. Teenagers that feel forced into leaving traditional school or feel that online studying is a punishment often become unmotivated to do their assignments.


There are set schedules for both online and traditional middle-level schools. Even online learners often have to log in to their classes at a specific time to have instructor-led instruction. Nevertheless, the flexibility that online school offers is two-fold:

  1. Learners in online courses are not confined to a building for eight hours, so they can complete coursework where they opt, as long as they have access to the internet.
  2. Online schools usually offer specialized classes that brick-and-mortar schools do not provide.


As part of the No Child Left Behind Act, states are necessitated by law to assess middle-schoolers in the subject areas of reading and math. This regulation includes public schools that run on an online platform. Private schools can usually choose whether they want to add these evaluations as part of their curriculum.

While learners in a traditional environment take these assessments in school, online learners typically require to take them at a testing location with a proctor at a specific date and time. The setup can be an obstacle for parents or guardians who want to take time off work to accommodate the school’s testing schedule.


Online School for Middle Schoolers

Parents and guardians have access to both free and paid online schools, like traditional public and private schools.

Some online middle-level schools function the same way as a public school since they go through a public school system. Your teen will learn the same curriculum taught in traditional public schools through that district but will use the online platform. These schools have state-certified teachers and follow the traditional school year. Also, you can contact your district’s school board to explore more regarding the enrollment process for your teen.

Opting for private online learning would cost tuition but could give your teen more individualized learning. Most paid schools have special programs that cater to your teenager’s interests, needs, and schedule. Your teenager might be eligible for scholarships that can assist the cost of tuition, which can range between hundreds to thousands of dollars each year, depending on the school.


The world is changing, and most parents wonder if enrolling their middle school-aged teens in an online school is the best move. Whereas there are arguments on both sides, consider how your own teenager learns best. For a learner who works and learns well independently, online studying and virtual schooling may be ideal. Additionally, it nurtures entrepreneurship. Many more individuals work at home these days, and online learning prepares them ready for this if they opt to work at home.

Weigh the advantages and disadvantages for yourself, then decide what works best with your middle schooler.

Resources and References: