MNVA Transforming Student Success

Originally aired KIMT-TV – March 30, 2021

While a lot of students are struggling with learning online through a computer – one Minnesota student prefers that way and it’s actually improving his grades.

High school junior, Eric Arvis, has a developmental delay, which makes learning in school a little more difficult. His mom, Christine, explained he was enrolled in the Minnesota Virtual Academy when he was younger, but decided to try public school one more time. That’s when Christine said one of Eric’s teachers told him he would never amount to anything. “To me, it’s how dare you tell a student that they cannot do something,” she explained. “There is a way for every student to learn. But instead of tunnel vision, it’s how does this student learn.”

After switching back to the Minnesota Virtual Academy where it’s strictly online learning, Eric is now getting all A’s and enjoys learning from his teachers. As students and parents are still trying to navigate through distance learning, Christine shared some advice. “Organization is huge and taking that breath and knowing that yes it’s different, but it will be okay,” she explained. “Make sure you ask questions. There’s a host of us out there that have been doing this for awhile – we get it. Don’t be afraid to ask.”

In a recent survey done by the Journal of Adolescent Health, 31% of parents with kids who have a developmental disability say distance learning is challenging.

To learn more about Minnesota Virtual Academy, visit

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