- All Questions
What is FLEX High School?
FLEX High School is part of a network of nonprofit public schools that provides students with personalized learning, career training and life skills.
What makes this school different?
Many of our students must manage adult responsibilities that make it hard to attend school all day, five days a week, so flexibility is important. Personalized learning puts the student at the center of everything we do. We help students who need more than what traditional schools offer. We recover at-risk students and help them earn a diploma for free.
How does FLEX High help communities?
There are more than 4.5 million opportunity youth in the country – unengaged in school or the workforce. Many students were once dropouts – ineligible for 90% of jobs, eight times more likely to end up in jail. As high school grads, our students become contributing members of society who are more likely to vote, volunteer, contribute tax revenue and become part of a skilled workforce.
What kind of success has your program seen elsewhere?
90% of our students are successful – either catching up on credits to graduate with their class or by staying in our programs to pursue a diploma. And 46% of our graduates go on to post-secondary education. So far, more than 20,000 students have graduated from our programs.
What are your goals for the schools in the region?
We are committed to working with the local school districts to recover students who aren’t engaged in school. We believe every student has the potential to graduate and we’ve developed a proven model that helps failing students overcome the multiple obstacles they face and get them back on track to a promising future. Establishing community partnerships is an essential element to our educational model so we are always looking for more local resources and services we can offer to our students.
Do you take students with learning difficulties or special ed?
Absolutely. Our enrollment is open to all students and we have programs to serve special ed, English language learners, etc. We have a great success rate helping the students who need it the most.
How are you funded?
Our funding is the same as any public school. We are allocated funds on the number of students who attend and consistently earn credits toward a high school diploma.
Do you steal students from the districts?
No. Most of our students come to us after being out of school for an average of more than three months.
The age of our overall student population is 18. About 60% of our students are too old or are ineligible to return to traditional high school, so without our school they’d have very few options.
Why are your schools located in strip shopping malls?
Access is the number one reason. We go where our students are and can have easy access to. Shopping centers are often on public transport routes. Sometimes an abandoned retail center or even closed down liquor store is an ideal location for a larger resource center. Once our resource centers open, we see it often revitalizes the business and economic activity in the strip mall.
What does it cost to attend?
There is no cost to the student or families to attend. In fact, because our unique model and community partnerships, we are able to provide school supplies, bus passes, snacks and other materials at no cost to students or families.
Are you a private school?
No. We are a nonprofit public school. Each school is locally controlled, tuition free, and gives students the flexibility and one-on-one attention they need to succeed.
Does the student have to have a certain GPA to attend?
No. There are no GPA or credits requirements to enroll. Our programs can help students catch up on credits so they can go back to graduate with their class, or they can stay with us and earn a diploma.
What kind of job training do you have?
Every student must take a course in soft skills training that teaches them how to conduct themselves in an interview, like having a strong handshake, maintaining eye contact, putting together a resume and so on. Through our workforce partnerships, we offer specific job skills training programs like IT essentials or mechanics, woodworking, etc.
What services do you offer?
Our entire mission is to reengage students who haven’t been successful in traditional school and help remove all obstacles to their education. We do that through:
• Personalized Learning: The first step we take with students is to assess their skill level and learning modality. After we gauge their reading and math levels, teachers tailor a customized curriculum and academic action plan.
• One-on-One Attention: Our students meet with a supervising teacher throughout the week to review their personalized lessons, get help with assignments and complete tests. Tutors are available to students for additional help. Counselors provide mentorship and guidance to help students navigate issues outside of the classroom.
• Flexibility: Students can complete their assignments at home or at resource centers. They also benefit from year-round school and extended open hours to access teachers, computer labs, learning materials and tutoring.
• Job Skills Training: We offer job skills training programs that help students prepare for a future beyond a diploma. Our workforce partnerships allow us to provide work readiness skills, work-based learning opportunities, internships and job opportunities.
• A Safe Environment: Our school has controlled, secure access to provide a safe and welcoming environment that minimizes stress and opportunities for bullying. Front desk staff greets each student by name when they arrive.
How is the student’s day structured?
The student comes in multiple times per week, depending on their work on a certain subject. They first meet one-on-one with their supervising teacher to review their progress, goal set, and discuss any obstacles at home or school. Then they meet one-on-one with one of their subject-area teachers, participate in small group instruction or lab classes, take an elective, participate in a club or sport, or utilize the wrap-around services like tutoring, mentoring and counseling.
Are the teachers credentialed?
Our teachers are credentialed, as they would be for any traditional public school. They are highly qualified with multiple and single subject specialties.
How do you get your students ready for college?
We have a rigorous curriculum and our students are ready for college when they graduate. In fact, our personalized learning model is very similar to the dynamic they will encounter in college. We work with each student to help them achieve their goals – whether that is college, technical school or preparing for a career. Many of our students came to us after almost giving up on a high school education. For some, getting a good-paying job is the priority.