Florida Virtual School Employee Reviews

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Not for everyone
Instructor (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLJuly 27, 2018
I took this position thinking that I would have flexibility while still being able to teach. It did not offer the flexibility I thought it would and I often worked late and many weekends. Summers and holiday vacations where the busiest because that's when the public school students did most of their work. This isn't a job for everyone, but there are many who love it.
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Good work Poor Leadership
Test Lead/ QA Analyst (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLJuly 12, 2018
Good experience.I learned a lot about QA/QC in the Education environment. Management however was poorly trained. High turnover rate. Also, hiring process was poor. Several people were hired without the required skill sets.
Pros
Building Courses
Cons
Lack of Leadership
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Customer service rep, not a teacher
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLJune 18, 2018
Claim that they put people first, but data is their priority. If you think testing data is stressful, run away now! Call quotas, and logging EVERY conversation all day long, takes away from quality instruction. Management is passive aggressive, acting like they want to help, but never actually help, and blame others. Teachers are discouraged from collaborating or working as a real team. Zero time for personal situations. Can’t work out of Florida at all. If you’re a teacher who genuinely puts their students first, you will hate this job. Call numbers first, then students.
Pros
Students and their families are amazing!
Cons
Management, no collaboration, zero praise, call quotas, etc.
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5.0
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Great company to work for.
Lead Teacher (Current Employee) –  RemoteMay 31, 2018
Requires dedication and self-motivation. You spend the majority of your day on the phone with students and parents. You will teach live lessons via the internet as well as work with students one-on-one in your virtual office.
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3.0
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Spent lots of time on phone, chasing data points
Full-Time instructor of Economics (Current Employee) –  Orlando, FLMay 31, 2018
Key data metrics have to be met such as talking to each student monthly which is not always necessary as a student may not need any help. Over time, student to teacher ratio growing to a point that it is hard to truly know your students and have quality interactions with them.
Pros
flexible schedule
Cons
too many students per teacher
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5.0
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Student Centered
Florida Virtual School Full Time/Algebra 1 Intern (Former Employee) –  Aldridge, ILMay 30, 2018
Set up for student and teacher success.
Supportive, positive, and integrated culture.
Well set up and thought out. All the staff I came in contact with were very upbeat and supported the mission.
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4.0
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Overall great company to work for
Lead Instructor Labs and Flex Pod (Current Employee) –  Hialeah, FLMay 21, 2018
I loved working at FLVS when I was a teacher. But the role of Lead Teacher is so stressful but at the same time boring. There is no challenge at all. I work many more hours than as a teacher and have tons more responsibility but get paid the same. I took the position as a springboard to move into administration but unfortunately, FLVS prefers to hire from the outside for assistant principal and principal positions.

On the plus side, the great majority of the managers are very human and understanding. You get to set your own schedule for the most part and can work in your pajamas from home or anywhere in the state of Florida. You can go to the doctor or the gym without having to ask for time off. You do need to be VERY organized to keep yourself to completing your required tasks within the allotted time frame so if you are forgetful or undisciplined this isn't the right place for you.

I would have stayed with this company until I retired but I want to move up and I haven't been able to so I am looking around to see what's available.
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you truly are just a # to them
Online Instructor (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLMay 16, 2018
You must perform at all times as a highly effective teacher.

If you get sick, management does not care, you must maintain a high level of activity

This company is great if you are great all the time
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Micromanaged Culture
Representative (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLMay 14, 2018
If you want to be micromanaged and bullied by your peers by all means this is the job for you. Student centered but they let their favorites do whatever they want.
Pros
Professional development opportunities
Cons
Constant changes affecting workflow, gossip, and very little support.
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5.0
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Awesome Company
Algebra 1 Teacher (Current Employee) –  Orlando, FLApril 15, 2018
Florida Virtual School is an amazing company to work for. We have awesome benefits and get paid well. Depending on the program you are working for though, the days can be quite long.
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4.0
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Great relationships with student and families
Instructor (Current Employee) –  Orlando, FLMarch 7, 2018
FLVS is a great place to work! Being remote affords a certain level of work/life balance opportunities; however, obligations to students and families as they work and learn on their own pace demands flexible and, sometimes, long hours tied to our technology.
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Management lacks consist direction and with focus only on student enrollment, they miss the critical IT issues that frustrate students and parents whi
Specialist (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLMarch 5, 2018
Management lacks consist direction and with focus only on student enrollment, they miss the critical IT issues that frustrate students and parents which lead to hundreds of missed enrollments. Employee turnover due to lack of any true advancement opportunities.
Pros
vacation time
Cons
lack of advancement
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Terrible treatment from administration.
Online Math Tutor; Algebra I Instructor (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLFebruary 26, 2018
Having to work 60+ hours a week. On the compute or phone literally 12 or more hours a day, including weekends. Unrealistic quotas & humiliated by administration if quotas were not met.
Pros
Benefits
Cons
Having to work 60+ hours a week.
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5.0
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Great work life balance
Math Instructor (Former Employee) –  Jacksonville, FLFebruary 20, 2018
Able to set your own hours,very flexible. Able to reach students throughout the state of Florida which makes every day fun and interesting. Great coworkers, wonderful atmosphere.
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4.0
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Allowed for flexible work day; however, work day often interfered with family time.
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLFebruary 8, 2018
While working for FLVS allows its employees the opportunity to work when it is convenient, they also must work when the student is available which is often during the hours most families spend time together. If you are a working mom with children in school, it is difficult to balance your work and home life as a lot of work needs to be completed in the evenings.
Pros
Flexible hours
Cons
Hours in the evening
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4.0
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You start off at the top of a roller coaster but the ride is worth it
Instructor (Current Employee) –  Remote (at home)February 4, 2018
Typical day
The first year is the most difficult. Learning a new program, having to work independently, you will put in 80-90 hours per week even with lesson plans made for you. After about 1.5 years I got into a routine of making calls 9 am EST - 12 and grading while talking.
12 - 1 Break to eat & stretch.
1 PM - 2 PM Return missed calls. No missed calls, grade.
2-4 make calls again, walk and talk (get a bluetooth headset).
After 4 don't answer calls until 6 (students will get used to your schedule).
Return calls at 6, optional make calls 6 - 7. Grade while talking.
After 7 walk away from the computer until tomorrow.
Sometimes you'll have students under special cases. They might request calls outside the 8 am - 8 pm availability and that's completely fine. Be sure to check all 3 of your emails. You must respond within 24 hours on VSA and Educator, grade within 48 hours (most teachers grade within 12). The only exception is the weekend. If you have Google voice, make sure you time it to not ring after 8 PM & do not ring on weekends.
FLVS is in the Eastern Time zone.
Most days for me are like the one above. Some days, such as "peak season" days require more from me. In that case I'm putting in 60-80 hours per week. But compared to the rest of the school year "peak season" only makes up 4 of the 12 months

Summer vacation?
No summer vacation. You will work in the summer but that's why the pay is so high, to compensate for working during the summer. In fact, summers are the craziest, which is why PLCs (professional learning community within your grade) are
  more... set up AFTER summer is over. Even though FLVS is NOT a summer school, it's the ONLY option some kids have. Summers are for getting summer school kids complete before b&m school starts.

Types of students?
The kids you'll be usually dealing with are the ones who are year round from Sep - May. They are either sports professionals, home schooled, also going to a b&m school, part of a traveling program, actors, singers, in the Olympics, love to draw, book worms, scientists, love video games, watch the same shows you do, etc. Everyone kid is unique and different, I get to know them as a person, more than I would in a b&m school. You don't see their faces, but you get to talk to them and develop a connection. Of course you have to be tough, too. You're their voice of reason and their goals are your goals. I let parents know in the welcome call if they need me to play the bad guy I will, kids get a flexible weekly pace but it's still a WEEKLY pace. Every student is truly different with great ideas. Plus, they keep me current.

Working Remotely Pros/ Cons
I love that I can work at home, in a car, RV, on a boat. However, there's a new rule that teachers can NOT work out of state. It's the only thing I can think of that makes me reconsider FLVS. I love everything about the school from flexibility to ownership to how much I adore my lovely team but the simple fact I can't work out of state kills me. I love to travel, that's one of the reasons I wanted this job. Now that I can't work out of state without getting fired really bothers me.
I hope they change this soon.
What I enjoy most about the job is that I can listen to spotify or watch Hulu or Netflix while grading or texting. I also enjoy that I can spend time with my pets at home as well. Did I mention I can work in my sweats? Messy hair, no make up, and I can use the bathroom any time I want.

How does time off work?
You will drink at least a gallon of water a day. Get your checklist ready for the next day the night before. For food and drinks, get that ready in the morning before working. You get paid vacations (1-2 weeks per year) sick leave (but you almost never use it) family leave for 3 months on top of all the holidays. If you want time off, check the teacher calendar w/your lead teacher to see what weeks are available. Email your principal & lead teacher in the same email asking for time off. If you get a yes from both, schedule that time off on Workday. The only down side is the other teachers grade and take your calls while you're out (obviously FLVS can't get a substitute to take calls for you because a substitute wouldn't know how to answer questions from students let alone grade subject specific material). You do have a lead teacher who oversees the grade / subject specific content who can cover your class for you but during March / April a lot of teachers take off for spring break and the rest of the team will cover because the lead teacher cannot handle 2-3 teacher classes on top of all the other things lead teacher worry about (intervention calls, reinstatements, dbas, etc). There is no spring break on FLVS.

Lesson plans?
You do not have to design your own lesson plans, they are designed for you. What you do is grade, help struggling students with assessments, complete crucial dbas, and offer support for students who are stuck. You also have a list of calls you make every week to keep students and parent engaged.

How to become a virtual family with team mates
Make sure you offer your fellow teachers help. Take as much as you know you can handle and when you need them, they will be there for you. If you have a question, email and ask your team mates. Everyone has helpful resources that they pass on. The teacher team is my virtual family.

Management
Management is tricky because I've been through 4 principals so far but they ALL moved up to do better things within the company. Principals who trust you and give you plenty of space to work on your own are the best. I love that they give me a list of students I need to touch base with at the beginning of the week and let me handle the rest without interfering, I feel like I get so much more done. I am so comfortable and I can't imagine doing anything else.

Starting out in the first year
The first year hired is the WORST. It's always going to be the hardest year because you have to get to know the system and you start off with at least 80 kids. I put in +80 hrs weekly my first year. If I could do it again I would've staggered welcome calls. I would tackle 40 kids one week, 40 in another. I did all 80 welcome calls the first week then I had all the same dbas and monthly calls due at the same time. Best to stagger it out so you don't burn yourself out. Without a functioning teacher there's no functioning class so make sure you take care of your best interests.

Discussion based assessments?
A dba is an oral exam that's probably the most crucial part of being a teacher on FLVS. Students have to test their knowledge before taking the big exam and before they do they prove they have what it takes in a dba. They can schedule this w/you using a schedule website, texting you, calling you, and emailing you. Keep options open. Offer a lot of positivity, dbas are VERY stressful for students. Students DO cry. It's so stressful for them bc it's a One on One oral exam. They're questioned on the spot, it's not the same as taking an exam online where they can spend 5 minutes flipping through their notes. These are some of the things I do: begin the phone call with asking them what they ate that morning or what they did over the weekend, etc. Get them to relax. If students can't answer a question, sometimes they know the answer but "tense up" due to the stress and can't speak. Give them plenty of time (3-4 seconds) after asking a question to respond. I complete a dba w/a monthly call.

Positive management -> teacher -> student
One of my principal who ended up moving on up helped me out with learning how to do what on VSA as a new person and I appreciate his help so much. In fact the CEO used to be my principal. That's the wonderful thing about this job, you have people who support you and want you to succeed. The principals give you space and encourage you. They are friendly and kind, always want you to be happy. How well you interact with students reflects on that level of happiness from interactions with colleagues, lead teachers, and the principal. That trickles down to how we communicate with the students and wanting THEM to succeed. All the principals I had were strict about ME taking time AWAY from the computer to take care of myself. Even though I'm available 8 am - 8 pm M-F, I'm not obligated to work in front of the computer all 60 hours. It's important to learn how to multitask to avoid being in front of the computer so much. Get a big smartphone with a bluetooth headset so you can complete dbas while shopping at Publix.

Is it laid back or constant work?
I've been with FLVS for a few years now and I've developed a routine and I love it. It took me over a year before I found a routine that works for me (I don't have any children and everyone online has different daily and weekly routines). Yes, every week is a lot of work. It's fast paced, demanding, but once you get the hang of it the fast paced becomes the usual and sometimes even fun. It's not repetitive.

Once the routine sets in, I wouldn't want to go anywhere else. I can see myself retiring right here.

What is provided at orientation
-computer
-headset w/mic

What I also have:
-desk
-computer mouse
-bluetooth headset ($30 on Amazon)
-Basket nearby for my cat to sleep in so he doesn't spread himself over my keyboard
-I use google voice, Chrome browser (if my computer dies all my favorites/ bookmarks are transferred over on Chrome)
-Use a quick text app on my computer

What is crucial
-BE TECH SAVVY! Get to know Google drive, slides, docs, voice, etc
  less
Pros
flexible, work in pjs, positive environment, one on one, collaborate, great teachers
Cons
Can't leave Florida
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Online teacher
Secondary Mathematics Instructor (Former Employee) –  RemoteDecember 5, 2017
Great job just not a great group of people to work with. Management is not consistent. Very compliant and not collaborative. Love working with the kids - best part of the job. Very flexible compared to traditional teaching jobs.
Pros
flexible
Cons
management
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Florida Virtual School.
Spanish Instructor (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLNovember 12, 2017
Very fast paced. Hectic. Opportunity to work from home. Very stressful. Opportunity to educate students on a one-on-one basis. Very fast paced environment. Opportunity for trainings.
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Run for your life
Management (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLNovember 1, 2017
This organization is very catty and cut throat. Unless you plan on walking on pins and needles and working an inordinate amount of hours then keep it moving! The leadership that continues to be brought in is making things worse and worse!
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4.0
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A forward thinking institution providing online education. Remote work was promoteedwith great results.
Chief Information Officer (CIO) (Former Employee) –  Orlando, FLOctober 19, 2017
A dynamic environment with challenges on a daily basis. Great staff and supportive management. Remote work was encouraged and productivity gains resulted.
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3.1
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