Deadline to Choose Irvine Virtual Academy or Traditional Model is May 5


Kate Hayashi

While the specifics of next year’s in-person learning model remain unclear, it is likely to be closer to traditional school, as pictured above.

Students have the opportunity to select between Irvine Virtual Academy and the traditional learning model for the upcoming school year; the deadline to make any adjustments to the decision is May 5. Here’s some information to help students determine which learning model is the best fit for them.

IVA was launched at the beginning of the 2020-21 school year along with the blended and hybrid learning models in response to the pandemic. The fully-online learning model attracted thousands of students from all grade levels, turning IVA into the largest public school in the world, according to director of virtual learning Kris Linville. 

“I perform much better in online school than traditional,” sophomore Aryav Nagar, who is opting to take IVA next year, said. “School takes up less time in IVA, and it’s also the safer option.”

With the rate of COVID-19 cases declining in Orange County according to the CDC, students can return to a traditional learning model in the upcoming year. However, there will be several changes from what students experienced in the traditional learning model from pre-pandemic years, according to principal John Pehrson.

“There are still months to go before we know exactly what the restrictions are going to be,” Pehrson said. “But if it happened today, we would be at a three feet minimum in classrooms, so desks could be closer than they are, and masks will still be in place.”

IVA will also experience changes next year so that it can offer a more similar experience to the traditional model. To allow students to blend courses between IVA and traditional, the two models must follow the same class schedule, so IVA will also have instruction five days a week, according to Pehrson.

“I liked traditional a little better,” sophomore Alice Shin, who experienced a traditional model her freshman year and the IVA model this past semester, said. “It makes me more productive than just staying home all day. I feel like it’s kind of more suitable for me.”