We opened our cyber doors on September 13, 2004. Since then, thousands of families across PA have trusted us with teaching their children, and we are proud to serve!
With this in mind, you can read below about our mission, vision, history and educational goal. Hence, you can learn about where we started and where we are going. Then, you may wish to further explore our FAQ to learn about how our school works, view a school demo, or contact us.
The PA Leadership Charter School’s purpose is to provide an academically challenging, knowledge-based curriculum, individually designed for each child’s needs. PALCS will combine the benefits of a classical basics oriented education with the latest Internet / computer technology and the best teaching and learning education practices. By studying the lives and works of the great leaders in history, PALCS students will develop multi-cultural perspectives and a global awareness. PALCS will prepare students to be informed, responsible citizens with a global mentality who will succeed through mentoring leadership.
PALCS’s vision is to provide parents with an option for public education that tailors an educational experience to the unique needs of their child and allows them to receive that experience via the World Wide Web. The PALCS’s curriculum incorporates differentiated teaching within a strong academic environment. PALCS’s teachers are encouraged to develop their own curriculum, additional resources and alternative learning styles to ensure that each student experiences the pedagogy that is most effective for him/her.
PALCS’s policy requires that the parent/guardian meet with the student’s teacher leader at the beginning of the student’s educational experience and once a year to review the Individualized Program of Instruction (IPI) developed by the teacher(s) and parent guardian for the student. Each student will receive instruction in music, art, foreign languages and technology as well as basic core requirements to ensure a well-rounded education.
Individualized Program of Instruction (IPI) for each student. The IPI partners with the parent to provide each student a chance to learn. It considers the student’s unique learning issues, schedules and motives.
Live teachers provide lessons in online classrooms. This allows students to attend class and do classwork wherever they connect to the Web.
Two-way technology that allows for live classroom instruction. Also, live chat rooms, live individual instruction as well as timely responses to submitted work.
Routine conferences for students to allow them to excel in an area or discipline.
The PA Department of Education (PDE) established Legislation for Charter Schools in 1997.
The PA Department of Education (PDE) established Legislation for Charter Schools in 1997. Then on October 1, 2002, Dr James Hanak submitted the charter for the PA Leadership Charter School (PALCS), heeding to the new law geared toward cyber charter schools.
After a long application and approval process, the state granted PALCS a charter on January 23, 2004. The staff spent the next eight months organizing the school office in Frazer, PA. They created a plan to acquire, ship and use computers and materials, and prepared to begin a new school. On September 13, 2004, PALCS opened its (cyber) doors!
We started with a course management system provided by Digital Schooling. Then PALCS welcomed 458 new students to the school during the first year. Finally, we closed the inaugural year with 711 students and our first graduating class!
The Early Years
The PALCS graduating class of 2009 consisted of 360 students. That is one hundred more students than the entire K-12 student body when the school opened. In the summer of 2009, the western region grew again. Therefore, we condensed the two smaller offices into one large Western Regional Center at The Landings. PALCS was proud to make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in the 2009-2010 school year.
2011 The Advanced Ideas Center was opened and currently houses the University Scholars Program (USP) and our Elementary and Middle School faculty including one of two school nurses.
In 2012 we added our Professional Studies program. This is an electives based certificate program for students looking to explore careers in fields of
Hospitality and Tourism and
Business Management and Administration.
During the 2015-2016 school year, our enrollment reached over 2500 students across PA. We updated all of our technology and learning platforms.
Named # 1 online school in PA in 2016 by Niche.com.
During the 2017-2018 school year, our enrollment increased to over 2900 students and we launched a new platform called PALCSchool to assist with day to day navigation of courses and increase student/teacher interaction. PALCS students scored 1166 overall on the SAT, higher than the state average of 1073 and PALCS students obtained an average composite score of 26.1 on
the ACT, higher than the state average of 23.7.
In the 2018-2019 school year our enrollment increased to over 3100 students. We continue to build and enhance PALCSchool and upgraded our PALCS Parent Network resource. NOCTI, Microsoft Office Specialist, A*S*K Business Institute, and A+ were added to the Professional Studies Program as certificates students can earn while completing areas of study.
We expect to have 356 graduates for 2019.
Number of Students Through the Years
PALCS Student Body
Our Educational Goals
Our goal is to prepare students to be creative, natural and reasoned leaders. We want students grasp the concepts, forces, thinking that shape world cultures. Our programs of study teach students to solve problems both alone and, in groups.
PALCS teaches students to be skilled in reading, writing, math, history, science and the arts. We prepare students for success, whether they continue higher education or enter the work force. Our emphasis on computer skills gives students the tools needed to address the unique career and global prospects facing them after graduation.
PALCS’ goals include:
higher standardized test scores
improve the worth of performance-based reviews
improve student attendance
high graduation rates
superior teacher training
Teachers design their lessons and curriculum. Teachers also receive regular training to enhance our student’s experiences. Their final aims are:
Increase students subject matter knowledge
Enhance motivation and morale for students
Personalize each lesson
Student success and graduation
PALCS evaluates each student twice annually to ensure the student meets state standards. Through routine online conferences, students connect with their peers and network in their core and elective subjects.
We provide students who have problems with extra tools and tutoring to keep them current with their peers. A guidance counselor directs this. Frequent grading gives instant feedback for parents on their student’s work. Regular emails between teacher and parent/guardian give lessons to focus efforts and overcome glitches in school work.
Finally, the goal of PALCS is to nurture the natural curiosity of children. We want to instill the joy of learning and inspire students to a lifelong fascination with their potential and their world.
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