My Job as an Educator in a Cyber Charter School

Emily Coleman
Emily Coleman
English language development teacher for a cyber charter school; Ph.D. candidate in Strategic Leadership and Administrative Studies with Education concentration

How My Job Looks Unique as a Teacher in a Cyber Charter School

For those educators who have never taught in the cyber world, the idea of K-12 students attending and succeeding in cyber school may seem impossible. However, that cannot be farther from the truth.

Having taught for more than 15 years in brick-and-mortar at the secondary and post-secondary level, I was very intrigued when a teaching position opened at a cyber charter school. This happened in the middle of the pandemic when many students worldwide had transitioned into virtual school and remote learning for some time. I saw the challenges and barriers that so many brick-and-mortar students faced when their schools were forced into virtual schools. I knew that those who were already settled in cyber charter schools were faring much better.

I decided it was the right time to enter the cyber school world. I am still a teacher, but my job does look a bit different than brick-and-mortar teachers. I am able to have much more family interactions. I can personalize all my lessons and assessments for my students with ease. I can use Universal Design of Learning (UDL) strategies during my teaching.

Communication and Technological Skills

Cyber school teachers must have excellent communication skills. Families of our students rely on an open communication channel to keep their students on track. We must be technologically literate. This does not mean that we must be able to code or get rid of computer viruses. However, we must be willing to try new applications and technologies in our classes.

Virtual Feedback

We also must be very creative with concrete feedback for our students, especially for those who attend asynchronously. Feedback is vital to help students improve and reach learning goals. Without feedback, students do not know how they are doing or where they stand in achieving the goals of the class. Feedback in cyber school is even more important. Not physically seeing a student in the hallway or handing them back an assignment face-to-face can allow a student to not acknowledge how well or poorly they did.

Engagement and Organization Teaching in a Cyber Charter School

Welcoming Environment

Creating a welcoming environment is the key to a successful school environment. This is no different in a cyber school environment. Cyber teachers must make it their goal to create a class community even though their students and them are not physically together. Teachers can get to know their cyber students in the same way brick-and-mortar teachers do. Celebrate birthdays, encourage students to share their favorite things, take time to have fun with your students.

Encourage Participation

There are many ways cyber students can participate whether their camera or microphone are on or not. Students can answer in the chat, they can annotate on the screen, they can use various applications to respond to questions. Participation does not have to be raising your hand and answering questions in front of the entire class. There are many ways that students can participate. Cyber teachers just have to show their students how.

Student Engagement

Student engagement does not necessarily mean active class participation. Engagement can be shown in other ways especially in the cyber world. When students are engaged, they are listening and thinking about the topic all at the same time. They may not be able to actively give an answer because they have not formulated their thoughts at that time. Cyber teachers need to distinguish active participation and real engagement.


Organization is also key to being a cyber teacher just like brick-and-mortar teachers. Even though most cyber teachers have the flexibility to work from home, they still have many duties that need to be completed each day. Planning out the entire week of lessons and meetings is just as important in the cyber world.

Why I Love My Job

Being a cyber school teacher has opened my eyes to how we have to give all children the opportunity to find the way they learn best. Brick-and-mortar is not the solution for all children. Cyber schools give children a safe space to learn at their own pace. Cyber schools allow for much more family engagement and teacher communication.

I am able to collaborate more with my fellow teachers and work one-on-one with students who need extra support. I love learning about all the newest technology and how I can use it to improve my teaching and my students’ learning. Cyber charter schools allow students and families to find the best way to learn, engage, and succeed in school.

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