Welcome to the Greater Commonwealth Virtual School
GCVS is an engaged, energetic community of students, families, and highly qualified certified teachers that stretches across the state of Massachusetts. Ours is a school for everyone, and we all work together to build a diverse community that is supportive and inclusive. We aim to supplement the educational programs offered by the traditional school districts, by working with them to provide unique programs that address the needs of students who learn better in non-traditional educational environments. Under the Massachusetts School Choice program, we offer students an alternative way to succeed academically and successfully prepare for life beyond K-12 education.
In our virtual classroom-based programs, students who benefit from structure take part in live lessons and a well-scheduled school day. These schedules are similar to those found at a traditional school, but benefit from the flexibility of an online classroom and the home environment.
And in our personalized asynchronous programs – lessons that can be learned whenever and wherever students best learn – we’ve designed a program for those students who need a flexible school schedule to fit into their busy lives and those who learn best without a daily school structure.
At Greater Commonwealth Virtual School, we bring the future of education to you. We make sure every and all kinds of students have their needs met in the form of a high quality, public education that is tailored to them. We’re excited to share what we do with you!
Our Mission and Vision
The Greater Commonwealth Virtual School, a public school of choice, serves students from across Massachusetts who need a learning community that is accessible and flexible. We give our students and their families choices in what, how, when, and where they learn.
As a pioneer of online personalized learning, we empower our educators to tailor learning experiences to each student’s strengths, interests, and challenges. We redefine and change how students and teachers engage through innovative technology, while ensuring mastery of competencies embedded in a rigorous curriculum.
A Commonwealth Virtual School – a public school of choice
GCVS is a Commonwealth Virtual School (CMVS) which, according to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, is a public school operated by a board of trustees where teachers primarily educate from a remote location using the Internet or other computer-based methods, and students are not required to be located at the physical premises of the school. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education grants a certificate to the board of trustees of a virtual school. The school becomes a state entity, and its Board of Trustees becomes directly accountable to the Board of Education and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
GCVS is an autonomous school district that operates independently of any existing school district. As a public school of choice, GCVS is open to all students in Massachusetts, regardless of the school district they reside in.
GCVS is authorized by the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and meets or exceed all state and federal guidelines. And just like all students in Massachusetts, Greater Commonwealth Virtual School students are evaluated on those standards by taking the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System exam, also known as the MCAS.
In GCVS’s case, our students are prepared throughout the year for these exams through our comprehensive curriculum. That’s not to say we “teach to the test,” but rather our curriculum prepares students with relevant subject matter knowledge as well as critical thinking and problem solving skills that helps them succeed on the exam. Students take the test across the state, with the teachers they know and trust administering the assessment.
To teach in Massachusetts, educators must obtain licensure from the state. As an authorized virtual school, all GCVS teachers meet or exceed the Massachusetts requirements.
The Greater Commonwealth Virtual School is governed by a board of trustees, appointed by the state’s commissioner of education.
An Exciting, Interactive Learning Environment
Real-Time Class Discussion
In our elementary, middle, and high school programs, students learn in a semi-structured schedule and are able to take advantage of “live lessons” where students and teachers interact in real-time.
When the lesson allows for it, live lessons will be broadcast on-location from museums, parks, and other places of interest.
School at Home
Online school students benefit from the environment of homeschooling and a high quality, public school education taught by certified, experienced teachers.
This best-of-both-worlds scenario lets students learn and succeed from wherever they and their parents desire while enrolled in either the live lesson or asynchronous online programs.
The Learning Coach
The “Learning Coach” is a parent (or other responsible adult) who works in conjunction with the online classroom teachers . No specialized knowledge is necessary, just a desire to help students learn. Being a Learning Coach is a rewarding role – expect to be highly engaged with your child’s program and start new relationships as co-learners, explorers, and intellectual partners.
Virtual Learning Spaces
Students in the real-time online schools can engage in every aspect of a course through real-time discussions in which instructors and students see, hear, and interact with one another.
Online and In-Person Events
What do parents & students think?
GCVS students and their families are at the heart of everything we do at our school. Every student enrolls for their own reason, and each of their experiences is unique to them. Together, they form a diverse community of learners who connect with each other on a variety of levels.