Who can take RCSOnline courses?
RCSOnline Courses are offered only to Rutherford County students who are in the ninth grade or higher in an RCS high school. Rising freshmen are not permitted to take summer online courses before they start ninth grade. Students not enrolled in an RCS high school are not permitted to take RCSOnline courses.
How long do I have to complete a course?
In the summer, each half-credit course lasts four weeks, just like on-site summer school. You may take two half-credit courses each term, for a total of four half-credits. You must successfully complete your first term courses by the last day of the term in order to be allowed to enroll in term two. If you are planning to take courses in both terms this summer, you may register for all of them at the beginning of the summer.
Students who have not completed their first term courses by the the last day of the term can request a one-week extension at a cost of $50. Any assignments not completed by the end of the one-week extension will be given a grade of zero. Students who purchase an extension for Term One cannot register for a class in Term Two. Students taking courses in Term Two can also purchase a one-week extension. Graduating seniors needing an extension will NOT be allowed to participate in the graduation ceremony.
How much time will it take every day?
For courses taken over a 4-week summer term, expect to spend at least 3 to 4 hours per day, five days per week or an average of fifteen to twenty hours per week working in the course. Make sure you have this much time in your schedule before you decide to take the course.
While online learning offers flexibility in the time of day that a student works on the course, and does not generally require a physical presence in a classroom, virtual attendance for summer courses is required for a minimum of five days per week. This means that the student is active in the course five days per week and completes work on time.* RCSOnline courses are NOT “at your own pace.” Courses have due dates every week, and points will be deducted for not meeting those deadlines.Click here to read the Virtual Attendance and Late Policy. You and your parents will have to sign acknowledgement of this policy to register.
*Students are allowed to work ahead and finish the course early. If you know you will not be able to be in the course for a few days, you must do those assignments ahead of time. Once you have completed your assignments in advance, contact your teacher to obtain permission to be inactive in the course for the designated days. Staying at least a few days ahead of schedule is recommended for all students.
I have a busy summer schedule. Can I still take online courses?
Situations such as working at a job, going on a trip, participating in sports or other extra-curricular activities, etc. do not give the student permission to be inactive (virtual absence) or behind in the course. If obligations such as these and others will prevent you from staying on pace in an online course, then online learning is not for you at this time. Consider all your obligations carefully before you make the commitment to online learning. When you enroll in an online course, you are saying that you have the time to complete the work as required and on time. If you have things coming up and need to be "absent" from your course for a day or so, you can and must work ahead to complete assignments in advance of days that you might be unable to work. You cannot skip assignment deadlines expecting to "catch up" later.
Where can I work on my course?
Most students work from home. Some students work occasionally at the summer school lab. Students will need reliable internet access at home to complete their assignments. Internet access at home is the responsibility of the student/parents and is not provided by the school district. If you have problems with your computer or internet at home, you may work on your assignments on a computer at the summer school lab at Blackman High School during summer school hours. Additionally, you will need a desktop or laptop computer. A phone or tablet is not sufficient for completing all assignments.
How do I become familiar with the online learning environment?
An online orientation is required for first time RCSOnline students. All students who have not previously taken a course through RCSOnline MUST complete an online orientation "class" that is approximately one hour in length. Details regarding the orientation will be emailed to the students and parents.
What do I have to do at school?
For each half-credit course, there are two things you must do at the summer school site (Blackman High School):.
1. Mid-way test - must be supervised by the lab facilitator at summer school site (Blackman High School). (This test is the equivalent of a nine-weeks test.) Exact date of the mid-way test will be announced by the teacher in the course. This test counts as 10% of your course grade.
2. Semester exam - must be supervised by the lab facilitator at summer school site (Blackman High School). The semester exam must be taken no later than the last day of the course but can be taken sooner if the student has finished all assignments for the course. This test counts as 25% of your course grade. If you are taking a TN Ready course, the state test may substitute for the semester exam.
All students taking the second semester of a state TNReady exam course online must take the TNReady exam.
TNReady means state-tested. This applies to Biology, US History/Geography, Integrated Math 1, 2, or 3, and English 1 or 2. The TN Department of Education determines the specific dates for the tests to be administered. Those exams will be administered at your school in November or December and again in April or May. Your grade will not be finalized until you have taken the TN Ready exam. Your school counselor will be notified that you need to take the test and will inform you as to the exact date, time, and location for you to report for the exam.
Are these courses easier than regular classes?
Absolutely not. RCSOnline courses require the same amount of work as a regular face-to-face class. This is not the easy way to take a class. In fact, you must work hard to stay on track. Getting behind is the number one reason students don't pass an online class. Don't let that happen to you. If you need help, ask for it. Your teachers want you to succeed.
How much does it cost?
The cost is $150 per half-credit and must be paid before you can start the course. There are no fee waivers and no refunds for online courses. Be sure of your decision before you register for the course.
How do I register / enroll?
1.Registration for both summer terms began on March 12. Your registration process will go much more smoothly if you speak to your school counselor before completing the registration form.
2. I will contact your school counselor to confirm your approval to take the class.
3. You and your parents must sign the acknowledgment form for the Virtual Attendance and Late Policy and return it to Ms. Hunter or your guidance counselor. You may fax it to 615-898-7955, or email the scanned form or email a statement that you have received it to firstname.lastname@example.org
4. Once I have received approval from a counselor, and you have turned in the form I will contact you with payment and orientation information.
Online Registration for Summer, 2018, opened March 12, 2018.
The number of slots per course is limited, so registration is first come, first served. You are not guaranteed a place in the course until you are approved and have paid the fee. Once you fill out the registration form, you will receive an acknowledgment email. Your final approval email will come as soon as I hear back from your counselor.
Onsite Registration will be held at the summer school site (Blackman High School) on a date to be determined by the RCS Board of Education. Since slots are limited, the only way to ensure your spot for online courses is to register and pay in advance. If you register online, you do not have to come to on-site registration for online courses.
How do I pay for my course?
When we email you with final approval, we will send instructions about how to pay. We are not able to accept personal checks. We accept cash, cashier's checks, or money orders made out to Rutherford County Schools. We also have an online pay system that takes credit/debit cards. We do not post that link on our website because we do not want payments until you have been approved by your school counselor. We will send that link and complete payment details in your approval email.
Online courses are NOT covered by fee waivers. There are NO REFUNDS for online courses. Be sure of your decision before you enroll. Contact Ms. Hunter if you have questions.
One last thing to think about!
Students and parents should be aware that this is a sizable commitment in a limited amount of time and requires self-direction, good time-management skills and determination. While online learning provides flexibility in scheduling, it is not the “easy” way of taking a course. Online courses require the same work as face-to-face classes, and students must prepare for and take all state-required tests that apply to the course. Make sure you have time to complete the course and stay on track. Summer can be a busy time. If you are not sure you can fit everything into your schedule, call and we will help you to make a decision.
If you have additional questions about RCS Online courses, please contact Holly Hunter at 615-893-5812, ext 22067 or by email at email@example.com . We will be happy to answer your questions and concerns and help you decide if online learning is right for you or your child.
RCS Online Courses are also offered during the academic school year.