Frequently Asked Questions

About Brightspire Virtual School

What is Brightspire Virtual School?

Brightspire is a fully accredited, diploma-granting virtual school offering full-time and part-time enrollment for students in grades 6-12. Certified teachers and on-demand tutors (see tutor hours below) support students through a highly individualized course of study.

Is Brightspire accredited?

Yes, we are accredited by Cognia, one of the highest levels of secondary school accreditation in the USA. Our credits should be accepted by other high schools in the USA and our diploma should be recognized by any university requiring an accredited high school diploma. Always be sure to check with the school or college where you wish to use our credits or diploma. Brightspire courses are also NCAA approved.

What is NCAA course approval?

Brightspire courses are NCAA approved, meaning that our courses allow potential NCAA athletes to meet initial-eligibility standards. If you want to practice, compete and receive an athletics scholarship during your first year at a Division I or II school, the NCAA Eligibility Center must certify you as eligible. To gain eligibility students must meet certain academic requirements with NCAA-approved courses. You can read more about NCAA eligibility requirements here.

Which curriculum does Brightspire use?

Brightspire uses Time4Learning’s award-winning curriculum and instructional model, which is accredited by Cognia and approved by the NCAA to ensure students are college ready. Our curriculum features hundreds of engaging, award-winning courses, which include core subjects, interesting career electives, world languages, and honors and Advanced Placement® courses.

How much does Brightspire cost?

A non-refundable enrollment fee is charged at the time of enrollment. $75 will be charged for single semester enrollments and $150 will be charged for academic year (2-semester) enrollments. This fee will be charged again upon re-enrollment at Brightspire for each semester or year.

Full-time enrollment covers up to six courses. Tuition depends on whether you choose to enroll for a single semester or for a full year. Single semester enrollment starts at $2,240 and year-long enrollment starts at $3,990. We also offer single-course enrollment options. Read more about our enrollment options and fees.

How Does Brightspire Work?

How will my student learn at Brightspire?

Students will have access to our world-class learning management system where they will progress through course content at their own pace. Teachers will check on student progress on a weekly basis, providing feedback on their work. Students and parents can also request time to meet with teachers. In addition, students will have free and open access to 1-on-1 on-demand tutors in the core subjects of language arts, math, science, and social studies, and for Spanish and French language courses.

Does my student need to take an entrance exam?

No, Brightspire does not require an entrance exam. Enrollment is year round, so students may start anytime! Brightspire looks for students who are excited to engage with our school and improve themselves. Start by completing our registration form and one of our enrollment specialists will get back to you right away to explore if Brightspire is the right fit for you.

How much teacher interaction will my student have?

Brightspire uses a multi-level approach to guide students on their academic journeys.

  1. Teachers will check on student progress on a weekly basis, providing feedback on their work. Teachers will communicate with students and parents if/when intervention is needed to make a plan for the students to get what they need to successfully progress through the course. Parents and students can communicate with teachers via text, email or direct message through our online portal, as well as request a meeting with their teachers at any time.
  2. Students will have free and open access to 1-on-1 On-Demand Tutors.
  3. Mentors act as guidance counselors for students ensuring they are on track to meet their academic goals and are otherwise fully supported throughout their journey with us.

Will Brightspire accept transfer credits from another school?

Yes, we accept transfer credit for courses completed at an accredited high school. We also will accept transfer credits for approved homeschool portfolios.

What are the graduation requirements?

Students are required to complete a total of 21 credits to receive our standard diploma and 24 credits (which must include 3 Honors and/or AP® courses) for our honors diploma.

About Brightspire Courses

How long are courses? Is there a daily attendance requirement?

Students will have access to each semester-long course for 18 weeks. Students must complete each semester course within this time frame. Students can complete courses more quickly if they want to accelerate through the curriculum and are able to successfully complete the content.

There are no daily attendance requirements. Students access their classwork anytime and anywhere, and progress through the curriculum at their own pace. Students are expected to make regular progress in all courses in which they are enrolled. Our Learning Management System notifies students when their progress is off track in a given course. Teachers also help students stay on track as they progress through courses.

Does my student get to choose their courses? What is available?

During the enrollment process your student will be advised on which courses to choose based on a number of factors such as their personal goals, potential graduation goals, transferring credits from other schools, and timeline. We will then complete a course planner as part of the enrollment process. Our enrollment support team will be with you every step of the way to help make sure your student is enrolled in the right courses. It is important to remember that if your student is planning on graduating with us, they are responsible for ensuring they meet all the credit requirements for graduation. We will help along the way, but students are ultimately responsible.

To see the available courses, see the middle school catalog and high school catalog.

What if my student needs to drop a course?

To drop a course your student must contact our support team and we can do that for you. If the course is dropped within the first 14 days, Brightspire will grant a full tuition refund. No refunds are granted for dropping a course beyond this grace period. Dropped courses will disappear from your official transcript and not be counted towards your GPA.

Can my student take Advanced Placement® classes at Brightspire? How can they register to take AP® exams?

Yes, Brightspire offers many AP® classes for students ready to participate in college level coursework. As a virtual school we are not permitted to deliver AP® exams and are not allowed to register for exams on a student’s behalf. In order to register for an AP® exam as an independent student you must contact a school that can administer AP® exams and is willing to accept external students to register and take exams at their school. You can find a full database of approved AP® exam sites by location here.

What Support and Tools Does Brightspire include?

What if my student needs extra help? Is tutoring available?

Yes! On-Demand Tutoring is available for our core courses of language arts, math, science, social studies, and for Spanish and French language courses. These services can be accessed from the chat button while inside your course.

Student On-Demand Tutor Chat Hours*

Monday- Friday, 9 a.m.-10 p.m. EST

Saturday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. EST

*Hours subject to change

Students can also work with tutors through 1-on-1 live audio calls and a real-time collaborative whiteboard. Tutors have the capability to start audio calls directly from the platform, while students can communicate with tutors through messages to arrange an audio call.

Can I download progress reports or transcripts?

Student progress in all classes can be viewed anytime by parents, directly in our Student Information System. When using our system there is no need for official progress reports as students and parents are able to view current progress students are making in each course at any time. Progress can be downloaded in the form of an unofficial transcript at any time.

How do I order an official transcript? 

Students can request an official transcript showing their completed courses and grades directly from our transcript ordering partner called Parchment, a digital credential service for Official Transcripts.

To order an official transcript, set up an account with Parchment. You will be able to order and receive transcripts, as well as send them directly to any school or university you’d like.  Please note, there is a fee for each transcript ordered.

The processing time to receive digital documents is 3-7 business days. The processing time for mail documents is 4-6 weeks. This time may be extended during peak seasons.
**ALL International Requests MUST select FedEx shipping option to ensure delivery. If you do not, you are responsible for additional shipping costs that could occur.

Does Brightspire accommodate IEPs and 504 plans?

Brightspire can serve many requests for accommodations, but not all. Please contact us to see if we are able to accommodate your needs.