OPA and homeschool co-ops should not be equated. Homeschool co-ops are a good way for homeschooling families to pool their resources and expertise for specific and usually short-term study projects. One parent, for instance, may be especially proficient in math or science and teach a group of students that subject for a period of time. Generally speaking, homeschool co-ops are age-integrated, specialized, parent-run, and do not simulate a college structure. In some cases, co-ops also take over the primary responsibility of teaching certain courses instead of integrating the teacher and parent effectively for each course as is done in the hybrid-model. OPA is also different by virtue of having specific grade levels, consistent accountability from semester to semester, a full spectrum of courses complete with prerequisites and diploma plans, and a professional administration and faculty responsible for curriculum and instruction, partnering with parents to deliver some instruction in the lower schools.
Are colleges accepting students from hybrid model schools? What makes them attractive to colleges over other students?
Yes, hybrid models demonstrates significant benefits when compared to traditional schooling.
According to a 2011 Harvard study titled “Pathways to Prosperity,” just 56 percent of students who embark on a bachelor’s degree program finish within six years. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, just 46 percent of Americans complete college once they start, worst among the 18 countries it tracks.
Although various factors are cited for the college drop-out problem, educators, parents, and graduates who have been involved in the hybrid model believe the following about the alternative model of education:
- The hybrid schedule eliminates the adjustment to a college schedule
- Parents in the satellite classroom who partner with the hybrid school not only reinforce the direct teaching provided by the professional educator in the central classroom but they also teach their children study skills and organizational skills which have been shown through research to be highly correlated with good grades in college
- The emphasis on character development and family ministry in the hybrid model results in a strong discipleship approach, thus students are much more likely to enter college as Christian students who will not fall away from their faith
- The direct involvement required of parents in the hybrid model results in a strong relationship between parents and their children
Many people in the hybrid model believe other factors also contribute to students dropping out of college. Factors such as a lack of challenging courses in high school, the failure of schools to teach basic virtues (personal responsibility, ordering time, developing initiative, prioritizing tasks, and striving for excellence rather than perfection), and the removal of parents from the educational process.
Love for learning and a strong work ethic are essentials that parents can teach and hybrid schools can reinforce. Graduates of hybrid schools report that they have been well prepared for the challenges of college because they have been trained in the university system from the beginning.
Other practical benefits of the hybrid model include:
- Schools cost one-half to two-thirds less than private Christian schools. Both parents do not have to work in order to send their children to a hybrid school. The school is designed to keep costs low so that a single income family can participate, leaving mom or dad home on the days that the students are in the satellite classroom at home.
- The student teacher ratio is small.
- Many qualified teachers prefer to teach in hybrid schools due to the positive school climate and parental support. Some teachers and even college professors prefer the part-time schedule of the hybrid model. Thus, teacher retention is often high. Teachers have the freedom to pursue their love of teaching without the distractions and problems often observed in the traditional school. Students come to class prepared because parents are required to supervise their children. Discipline problems are managed quickly by involving parents early in the process.
- Parents find they have many teachable moments one-on-one with their children, without having to carry a full load of responsibility.
- Because of the university schedule, the peer pressure in most traditional schools is not a major factor. Students spend similar amounts of time under the influence of their parents as they do their friends.
- Some of the programs adopted from traditional schools are academic competitions, student council, yearbook, competitive sports, drama, band, choir, senior trips for educational purposes, and others. Students do not miss out on extra-curricular activities.
- With more time available on satellite days, older students in can pursue other interests that further their God-given purpose. Dancing, playing an instrument, participating in select sports, and even part-time jobs for some students are examples.
Does this type of schooling fulfill state requirements?
Yes, our academic standards meet or exceed the requirements for grade levels in the public schools in Oklahoma as published by the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
What is the typical schedule for OPA students?
School hours are 8:30am-3:30pm.
Pre-K through 8th Grade meets on Tuesday and Thursday. High School meets Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.
Students spend the other days learning off-campus and studying under the supervision of parents, completely guided by the structure of the school program.
Course schedules can be found here.
What curriculum do you use?
OPA uses a combination of BJU, IEW and Apologia.
Are your teachers certified?
Yes! Our teachers are either certified and/or degreed to teach in their subject area. We have 28 teachers and 9 have advanced degrees.
Why is parent partnership with hybrid model schooling so important?
Parents have the unique opportunity to disciple their children – to prepare them for life. Deuteronomy 6:6-9 says as parents, in our comings and goings, we are to impress God’s Word upon our children. When our children are exposed to the world, as we know they will be, we want parents to feel called and equipped to point them back to the gospel.
As a parent, will there be opportunities to be trained in the curriculum to help educate my child?
Parents are trained throughout the year on how to engage with us in the education process. Instruction is aligned between home and school.
Do you offer before and after school care?
No, but we do offer after school activities.
How do extracurricular activities work?
Student life and extracurriculars such as arts and athletics play an integral role in the development of students. We aim to offer opportunities for families to engage with each other outside the walls of school but within the confines of a like-minded community.
I'm interested in applying for OPA, what are the next steps?
What are the tuitions and fees?
Is there a discount for multiple children?
Families with more than one child enrolled at OPA will receive a 5% ‘tuition only’ discount for the 2nd child enrolled and a 10% discount for the 3rd and additional children enrolled. The child with the highest total tuition will always be considered the 1st child, with the 2nd highest considered the 2nd child, etc.