Virtual Academy holds open enrollment 2022-23

Burke Virtual Academy holds open enrollment
Posted on 02/14/2022

Morganton, NC – Monday, Feb. 14, 2022


Open enrollment for the Burke Virtual Academy starts Monday, Feb. 14 and continues through Friday, March 25 for the 2022-2023 academic year. The Burke Virtual Academy is for any student in kindergarten through 12th grade wishing to take a full slate of online classes, or for middle and high school students who would like to enroll in at least one online class while attending face-to-face classes at their base school and/or Western Piedmont Community College. New and returning students should visit to enroll. 

Dr. Kristin Edwards has been the coordinator of Burke Virtual Academy since its inception in 2020 during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Edwards said, “We started the Burke Virtual Academy out of a response to the pandemic and during a time when in-person learning and masking options were fluid. This year, the Burke Virtual Academy turned the corner and has evolved into a viable option for families who want more choice and more flexibility in their child’s education. We currently have 411 students enrolled in the Burke Virtual Academy who are successfully navigating this style of learning.”

Edwards and district leaders want all students, including Burke Virtual Academy students, to be successful. The Virtual Academy has outlined eligibility requirements for students specific to their grade level and has supports in place to help virtual learners be successful.

Parent or guardian involvement plays a big role in student success as they are called on to act as at-home learning coaches or facilitators. Orientations and virtual parent support groups are available to help parents navigate virtual learning. Common requirements include internet access, attendance, maintaining passing grades and commitment. A detailed list of requirements by grade level can be found here

While the Burke Virtual Academy operates under its own handbook, students remain assigned to their base school and can participate in extracurricular activities to help them explore interests and stay connected to their peers. New students and kindergarten students should enroll at their base school in the district they are assigned. A new application must be completed for current students who wish to enroll during the 2022-2023 school year. For secondary students, all virtual classes, including NCVPS, APEX and Burke Virtual courses, must be accessed through enrollment in Burke Virtual Academy.  

Edwards explained that high school students, including seniors, still graduate with their base high school classmates, can attend prom, play sports and be involved in other extra curricular activities. Lower grade students can participate in spelling bees, speech contests, robotics competitions and other activities either with their base school or virtually. The academy is looking to expand its course offerings based on interests and start virtual clubs. 

Currently, the Burke Virtual Academy has 13 full-time teachers in grades kindergarten through eighth and offers 24 sections in high school each semester. The academy also has a full-time school counselor who works with students and families and focuses on the needs of the whole child. 

Dr. Christie Abernathy, director of Advanced Learning and Innovation, said, “Virtual academy teachers provide students with instruction and help them gain independence to work on their own schedule. This flexibility makes the Virtual Academy model appealing to some families. Students and parents can organize daily school work routines to fit their lifestyles, making it easier for students to pursue outside interests while receiving personalized learning tailored to their needs.”


Burke County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Mike Swan said, “It has been interesting to watch the Burke Virtual Academy evolve over the past two years. I commend Dr. Edwards and Dr. Abernathy for their leadership and the teachers and students for their hard work in making this alternative form of education a success. I look forward to seeing the academy and its students grow in the years to come.” 


For more information, visit the Burke Virtual Academy website at To enroll, visit

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