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Why some Colorado families want to stick with remote learning

Online schools in Colorado expect increased enrollment
Online schools in Colorado expect increased enrollment 02:14

The state's only accredited synchronous virtual learning school is looking to see an increase in enrollment again. Following pandemic uncertainty, safety concerns, and an improved execution, parents and teachers are saying the expansion of online options is good for their students.

"They feel comfortable, maybe because they're in their home, maybe because they're behind a screen. But they feel comfortable because they're speaking out in class, they feel comfortable participating," said Kala Munguia, the Principal of Jeffco Remote Learning Program.

The program is expecting about 700 students for this upcoming year.

"Our real concern was about him just socially and how that was going to go, but that's turned out to be just fine," said Heather Hagen, a mother of a rising first grader. "I'm looking forward to the relationships that Eli can continue to build this coming year."

Jeffco Remote Learning Program is a synchronous school, meaning each day the classes start at the same time and most days students are learning curriculum together. The student body is made up from kids that could attend the 178 other schools in the district. JRLP is also open to enroll kids from other districts.

"The student is home with the family but they're also receiving that education. And at Jeffco we're always focused on instructional excellence and the student experience," Munguia said. "Making sure they feel safe. They feel secure. And that they're enjoying. They're having fun in school."

Safety and family connection are just some of the reasons Hagen has decided to keep her son enrolled.

"With what's been happening at schools and shootings, and so we take that into consideration just knowing he can be here with us," She said. "It's been really neat; we get to see how he's progressing throughout the school year."

"The teachers are very well connected with families because we're in their homes and they're in our classrooms.  And so those connections are being made and we're finding that's a really strong piece of our program," Munguia said.

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