In the Mail: Happy Birthday Illinois Virtual School

Happy Birthday, computer screen with balloons.
IVS has turned 15!


On this first day of the “official” 2015-16 school year, I wanted to take a second to thank all of you for all of the work you do to get the show going during this time.  🙂

I realized that among the hubbub of yesterday, it was our BIRTHDAY!  We almost forgot our BIRTHDAY!!!!

On August 24, 2000, the Illinois State Board of Education approved a resolution which brought the Illinois Virtual High School (our predecessor) into existence.  Yesterday, IVS/IVHS turned 15 years old!  HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO US!

Maria Gottschalk is the IVS Learning Management and Integration System Specialist. She has been with IVS/IVHS since it’s inception and continues to work with students, teachers, schools and families.

Seems like just last week, I was researching other online schools with Brad Woodruff, and in frantic phone calls with Phyllis Lentz from Florida Virtual trying to figure out how you did this thing called an online school.  That was long before platforms and integrations and text messaging. 🙂

We’ve come a long way….  When I stop to think of the tens of thousands of students in whose lives we may have made a positive difference, large or small, it’s just darned humbling.  We all have those memories and stories, kids or parents or teachers or principals for whom we were able to make a difference.  You guys, THIS is why we do what we do.  Well, that, and the fact that most of us are nerds and enjoy this kind of thing. 🙂

After receiving an email from our Director yesterday, I stopped for a second to realize….the number of Spanish enrollments for August alone is about THREE TIMES the size of our pilot semester back in Spring of 2001.  Wow.  Back then, we never thought it would be this big…we were just a few crazy thinkers busting out of our mental cubicles and trying to give kids more access to educational opportunities.

You guys…..  You are doing it!  You ARE making a difference!

I am proud of IVS and proud of us!  Now, let’s go have a great year!

Happy Birthday Smiles,

Maria Gottschalk

Learning Management Specialist

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