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Va. launches “Engage Virginia” to help students recover from the impact of the pandemic

Jillian Balow, Virginia’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, says the Va. Department of Education has launched “Engage Virginia,” an online academic recovery and coaching program to help students recover from the impact of the pandemic on learning, attendance and related issues.

Engage Virginia services are available to students, families and schools at no cost through a partnership between VDOE and Graduation Alliance, a Salt Lake City-based education services provider specializing in online programs for students and state and local education agencies.

“Engage Virginia will supplement the efforts already underway in our school divisions in partnership with VDOE to meet the needs of students still struggling with academic, attendance, mental health issues,” Balow said. “It is our goal to fill every available slot with students who can benefit from this support.”

School divisions have to opt-in to participate in Engage Virginia and to refer students and families to the program. Parents in non-participating divisions may enroll their children by registering directly on the Engage Virginia website.

Participating students and families are assigned an academic success coach to help them navigate the program and access online and in-person services, including:

• Academic resources
• Referrals for community services.
• 24/7 academic tutoring.
• Homework assistance.
• Motivational coaching.
• Study and time-management skills coaching.
• Test preparation and
• Feedback on resumes and cover letters.

The 2022 General Assembly appropriated $3.5 million for VDOE to create an online program to help school divisions provide support and coaching for disengaged, chronically absent and struggling students. VDOE contracted with Graduation Alliance to create Engage Virginia and provide support for up to18,500 students statewide.

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