Class Acts: Virtual Academy Makes Graduation a Reality for Teen Mom
Learning Liftoff’s Class Acts series profiles inspiring online education graduates. Their stories showcase how individualized, award-winning curriculum and technology combine to greatly influence student success and help propel the pursuit of post-graduate dreams.
Jordan Hoffman-Smith was scared and nervous at the prospect of becoming a teen mom at age 16.
And with the challenge of putting her child first came issues.
Jordan was dismissed from high school because of too many absences. Although she attempted to go back multiple times, missing regimented school days continued to be an issue. And the GED program was not the right fit for her.
As much as she wanted to graduate and earn her diploma, the odds seemed stacked against her.
At 18, Jordan and her husband had their second child and she became more determined than ever to make a better life for herself and her family. She continued to look for an alternative.
She needed something free, and a solution that could fit into her demanding schedule as a teen mom. She found what she was looking for in K12’s Idaho Virtual Academy (IDVA).
Four months into her junior year at IDVA, Jordan’s grades improved tremendously.
“I was learning at my own pace,” Jordan says. “I finally felt like I was being taught, not shown. When I started, I was four English classes behind my grade level, but I mastered English. I’m really good with computers, and my communication skills have improved.”
Jordan was able to do schoolwork at various times during the day while her mom watched her children. It meant a lot of late nights and, at times, not a lot of sleep. In the long run, however, it was all worth it.
Now, 19, Jordan is no longer another teen mom statistic. She graduated in 2015 with a 3.0 GPA from IDVA.
Currently a full-time mom, Jordan will spend the summer at home with her children, ages three and one. With her husband working, Jordan says she plans to continue her education through an online college.
The future is bright for Jordan thanks to her drive and determination. And, she learned a valuable lesson when it comes to online education.
“There are people out there who want to help,” she says.
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Brittany Marklin is a contributing writer for Learning Liftoff and a community manager for K12. She coordinates all K12 student contests and connects with families who pursue online education. She attended George Mason University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing, with a minor in tourism and events management. Brittany spent her first five years at K12 on the social media team where she aided with content and strategy for multiple channels, and helped construct K12’s user-generated content site, “What’s Your Story?” When she’s not working, Brittany loves spending time with her husband and daughter in North Carolina.