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Virtual Learning Option

Summary: The Virtual Option Pilot Program (VOPP) is at full capacity for all grades for this school year.

Online Learning Options

Seattle Public Schools (SPS) recognizes there are families who do not feel comfortable sending their students to in-person learning due to health and safety concerns. VOPP is a fully online K-12 program for families who choose to stay 100% remote. Enrollment is open to any student enrolled in an SPS school.

Enrollment for the 2021-22 school year is closed for all grades.

Students interested in the virtual option at Cascade Parent Partnership for next school year (2022-23) can submit a school choice form before the deadline of May 31.

Kindergarten – 5th Grade Students

For 2021-22, there will be a limited number of students in grades K-5 who can enroll in the virtual learning pilot. SPS will encourage K-5 grade families to consider this option if their student has thrived or could thrive in a fully remote learning setting. K-5 students with existing, documented health issues or concerns, including mental and emotional health concerns, will be prioritized for this virtual pilot.

Application is Closed for 2021-22. Waitlist Available

Thank you for your interest in the 2021-22 K-5 Virtual Option Pilot Program. The application for the 2021-22 school year closed on August 13. The K-5 VOPP waitlists will be dissolved on May 31.

Interested families can complete the waitlist application to be considered for enrollment. If space is available, a Seattle Public Schools staff member will contact you with details about the next steps for enrollment.

Virtual Learning Waitlist Application for K-5 Students

Waitlist applicants will be placed in priority order based on their date of application and the following criteria:  

  • Students with an underlying condition that increases their risk for severe illness from COVID-19.  
  • Students who live in a household where someone in the household is at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.  
  • Students who have a mental health issue or other condition.  
  • Students who experienced an increased sense of safety during remote learning. 

If your student is not initially placed in VOPP, families can use our typical transfer appeals process. Please note we are continuing to review applicant information. If we have an update, we will notify families as soon as possible.   

For students who are unable to enroll in VOPP, we have identified several alternative online learning options that are state approved and available at no cost to our students. The state-approved online programs are available to any student in SPS. If a student disenrolls from SPS, students will not be guaranteed a space at their option school next school year. State-approved options include:

For families interested in homeschooling with district resources, please view our Cascade Parent Partnership website.     

Students without an Individualized Education Program (IEP) with a medical, social-emotional, or mental health condition and/or are not able to get vaccinated due to medical conditions are encouraged to apply for a 504 evaluation, if one is not already in place. Please reach out to 504coordinator@seattleschools.org to connect with your school 504 team, who can provide guidance. 

SPS will be dedicating district resources to provide the best possible online learning experience and to meet our students’ needs. We intend to learn from the year and evaluate if a virtual option can be expanded in the future.  

Virtual Option Pilot Program Leadership

Superintendent Brent Jones has appointed Janine Roy as the Virtual Option Pilot Program (VOPP) principal for students in grades K-5.

Janine Roy: Principal Grades K-5th

After being a teacher, school principal, and district leader in Canada for 30 years, Janine Roy moved to Seattle in June 2016 to become principal of Queen Anne Elementary. Prior to joining the Queen Anne Elementary community, she was awarded Canada’s Outstanding Principal award in 2006 and started the first global school in Canada in 2008. “With our Creative Approach focus on our Five Pillars, social emotional learning through Positive Discipline, Project Based Learning, and Digital Leadership, Queen Anne Elementary is truly my dream school,” said Janine. “I am so fortunate to be part of this dynamic, enthusiastic community dedicated to empowering students to make a difference in the world and I’m excited to expand our offerings to include the Virtual Option Pilot Program next school year.”

School Building Assignments

K-5 grade students will be enrolled in Queen Anne Elementary.

Students will pick up resources including library books, textbooks, their school issued laptop, and technology supports from the assigned school building.

School Start and End Times

Queen Anne Elementary Start time: 7:55 a.m. End Time: 2:25 p.m. Wednesday Early Release: 1:10 p.m.

Will meals be offered to remote students?

Yes. More information about meals for students in the virtual program will be available soon.

Will English Learner (EL) services be provided through the Virtual Option Pilot?

Yes. If a student needs EL services, those services will either be provided through their neighborhood school or the VOPP.

Will transportation be provided to physical school buildings?

Virtual learning students that have transportation written into their 504 Plan or Individualized Education Plan (IEP) will receive it. Services may include transportation to the student’s neighborhood school or assigned VOPP school building if/when it is needed. No other students will receive transportation.

How will special education services be provided?

Students that have specialized services written into their IEPs (e.g., Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Speech) will receive them in-person at their designated school or remotely, if requested.

Will the virtual option include instruction for Highly Capable (HC) students?

Yes. Students will receive all services to which they are legally entitled through a differentiated approach.Will students be able to enroll in courses at their neighborhood school?

No. If students enroll in the VOPP they must attend 100% virtually except to receive special education or English learner services.

Can my student transfer back to in-person school during the same school year or once vaccines are available for all ages?

Students who wish to transfer back to in-person learning after enrolling in the virtual option will need to follow the transfer appeal process to return to their neighborhood school. A transfer back to their neighborhood school is not guaranteed.

Can my student return to their option school in 2022-23 (next school year) after being enrolled in VOPP in the 2021-22 school year?

Staff is bringing a proposal to the Seattle School Board that would allow VOPP students to return to their option school next school year. We will keep families informed about the Board vote.

Is there an option for my student to do a hybrid schedule, attending a few days per week in-person and a few days per week online?

No. This is a 100% virtual learning option, 5 days a week, except for students who receive special education or English learner services who may have in-person services written into their IEPs.

How is the Virtual Option Pilot Program being staffed?

The district asked educators to submit an interest form. Over 150 educators expressed interest to support this new program. The jobs will be posted online on Monday, July 12 and closed Sunday, July 18. The appointed school leaders will be hiring for each virtual school.

When will students receive their laptop and other supporting technology?

Late August. Students will pick up their assigned laptop from Queen Anne Elementary or at the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence. School principals will contact enrolled students directly with information about picking up resources and technology.

Have additional questions? Please send them to admissions@seattleschools.org.


6th – 12th grade Students

The SPS Virtual Option for Grades 6-12 will be ending its waitlist on April 01, 2022, to reduce the impact to students and schools involving grades and credit transfers as we near the end of the school year.

Students interested in the virtual option at Cascade Parent Partnership for next school year can submit a school choice form before the deadline of May 31.

If you have any questions, please contact Faauu Manu, Admissions Manager at fmmanu@seattleschools.org

All students who opt into the 6-12 VOPP will remain enrolled in SPS, but they will be reassigned to the 6-12 VOPP at Cascade Parent Partnership. Enrollment is open to any SPS student, but space is limited to 300. Priority will be given to students who:

  • have a documented underlying condition that increases their risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • live in a household where someone in the household is at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • have a mental health issue or other condition.
  • experienced an increased sense of safety during remote learning.

Students should commit to staying in the program through the end of the 2021-22 school year.

Courses will be taught by Washington State Certificated teachers using Edgenuity Instructional Services.

  • The SPS calendar will be followed with holidays, breaks and grading periods. The calendar will be set up in the Edgenuity system so work is not assigned on these days.
  • Online access 24/7 with limited scheduled real-time sessions provides flexibility for students and families. Daily attendance will not be taken.
  • SPS Certificated staff will mentor and track progress of secondary students and will work with families to assure students are on track to successfully complete courses.
  • SPS Certificated counselors and staff will provide support services for students.

More info on Edgenuity

Application and Waitlist Are Closed

The VOPP 6-12 waitlist application form will closed February 18. The current waitlist will dissolve on April 1.

Returning to In-Person Learning after Virtual Learning Enrollment

Students may return to in-person learning at the school/program they were previously enrolled in after completing the transfer appeals process.

  • Middle school students may experience quite an adjustment due to differences in instructional content, so they may want to wait until a term ends to make the transition. 
  • For high school students, we suggest that return occurs at the semester to assure grades and credits are transferred.

What is the difference between the SPS Additional Virtual Option starting in Fall 2021 and the distance/remote learning that occurred in late winter of 2020 through spring of 2021? 

Unlike the approach to remote learning in SPS during the 2020-21 school year, the SPS Additional Virtual Option will not require students to login at a specified time each day to experience live instruction by a local teacher.  Instead, secondary students will interact with Edgenuity online courses that provide video of a teacher providing instruction, tasks for the student to complete on-screen, guided practice, assignments that students complete offline and submit to the teacher for review and evaluation.  There will be recommended pacing for the course based on the start date and end date that the district sets.  

A Washington certified teacher will manage the student work, evaluate assignments, provide progress reports and will be available to answer student and parent questions.  Every two weeks teachers will contact families to provide a progress report. Parents and caregivers will have the opportunity to access guardian accounts so that they can login and view progress anytime for 6-12. They can also access automated reports sent to parents.  

What is dual enrollment? Are students allowed to remain enrollment at their current school?

Dual enrollment is a student who will be attending two different districts at the same time at a certified OSPI online academy while enrolled at SPS part time. The virtual program at SPS is not an academy, so dual enrollment doesn’t apply. Cross enrollment to in-person learning courses from VOPP is allowed, up to 3 courses but must be approved by both principals and not a guarantee.

Can students return to their neighborhood school in 2022-23?

VOPP students are expected to commit to a one year stay in this program (ending June 2022). However, students enrolled in a choice school may be guaranteed to return to that school ONLY if they have attended through the end of March 2022 (3rd quarter). Short of this commitment, it is subject to availability to return to their choice school upon requesting to transfer back. Students are guaranteed a spot at their neighborhood school to return if their choice school is not available.

How will grading be handled?

Grades will have to be closed out from the current school then we will register students for the concurrent course in Edgenuity (.25 credits for Q1 and .25 for Q2). Students will earn .5 credits for the semester, keeping them on track with graduation requirements.

In the case that Edgenuity does not offer the next course in line, we will have to work with the student and family to enter the next closest class. All students will be assigned a SPS staff person to assist in all scheduling supports. 

Can students participate in extracurricular activities?

Students may participate in extra-curricular sports and after school activities at their neighborhood school. Families must work directly with their school, so make sure to connect with the activities coordinator/athletic director at the school of reference. All Edgenuity classes are NCAA approved, but each college/university handles online class credits differently. It is up to families to confirm the amount of allowable online credit with their college or university.

Can students continue to take classes at their current school?

All classes will take place through Edgenuity, so students will not be in any of their current classes but will be placed in the corresponding course in the Edgenuity system.

Will there be any live instruction? 

All lessons would be asynchronous (virtual), but students can request access to teachers and a 6-12 SPS staff member will be assigned to your student to provide additional assistance. 

Will students have access to the same course catalog they have at their current school?

No. When choosing the 6-12 VOPP, families should be aware that not all classes offered at SPS are offered through Edgenuity. Staff at the 6-12 VOPP will work with students and their families to create a schedule that best mirrors their current schedule and keeps them on the path to graduation.

Bridge to College classes are not offered through Edgenuity. These classes will be replaced with AP courses in the Edgenuity system. AP Human Geography and AP Biology will not be available. Please note that Edgenuity does not include a CTE graduation pathway, International Baccalaureate or STEM.

More info on Edgenuity

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