Who Are We?
The Southwest Colorado eSchool (SWCeS) is an accredited regional, diploma-granting, online high and middle school serving communities in Southwest Colorado. SWCeS is a tuition-free online school available to students in grades 6-12. Students enrolled in SWCeS engage in rigorous courses, aligned to Colorado standards, taught by licensed Colorado teachers. All courses are offered through the Internet with students participating at a distance from their home or another Internet access point.
The mission of the SWC eSchool is to engage area students and ensure their success by delivering high-quality online curricula and instruction in a locally supportive and safe environment.
The vision of the Southwest Colorado eSchool is to ensure that all students who enter our learning community have access to expanded learning opportunities involving strong instructor support that contribute to a high school diploma with the skills and knowledge needed for postsecondary study or workforce readiness.
Enrollment in the SWCeS is available to students in 6th – 12th grade who are residents of Archuleta, Dolores, La Plata, Montezuma, or San Juan counties in Colorado.
San Juan BOCES
The Southwest Colorado eSchool is operated by the San Juan Board of Cooperative Education Services which is a public organization created to provide shared educational services to school districts. The mission of the San Juan BOCES is to provide a cost-effective, collaborative core services framework for member school districts where student achievement is maximized. Core services may include areas such as Exceptional Student Services, Professional Development, Instructional Support, Data and Business Management Services, and other needs as identified by member districts.
Design and Structure of the School
Online programs vary in their design and structure. The SWCeS prides itself in working with highly qualified teachers and providing diverse, rigorous curricula to our rural region of the state. We currently focus our efforts on delivering diverse and rigorous courses from partner entities.
- Semester Design – The SWCeS does not provide self-paced coursework; rather, courses follow a traditional semester design and have important enrollment deadlines. After these deadlines, new students must wait for the beginning of the next term to start their studies. Students may enroll in the middle of the academic year if there is space.
- Highly Qualified Teachers – All SWCeS teachers are highly qualified in their area of expertise and come from other regions of the state. Teachers are contracted through our partner organizations with Jefferson County’s 21st Century Virtual Academy and Colorado Digital Learning Solutions.
- Highly Qualified Tutors - The SWCeS provides free support from tutors certified as teachers in each content area. They are available during the week to meet virtually or in-person at the Learning Center.
- High-Touch Instruction – Teachers are heavily involved in online coursework at the SWCeS. Classes meet weekly in synchronous online virtual meetings. Teachers commonly preview material or concepts important in forthcoming assessments or activities. Students benefit from these interactions by hearing direct instruction, asking questions, responding to prompts, and hearing the inquiries of other students. Teachers also communicate regularly to all students and pay particular interest to students who are falling behind or not achieving.
- Orientation Programs – The SWCeS requires that all students complete an Introduction to Online Learning course prior to starting coursework. This course can be taken at any time prior to the beginning of a term, so that students start coursework promptly. The orientation introduces students to all of the communication, participation, and evaluation aspects of online learning as well as student expectations for conduct, academic honesty, and etiquette.
New students also complete a face-to-face orientation day at the beginning of the school year. The time spent with SWCeS staff establishes a personal connection that carries into the advising program. Students in different parts of the SJBOCES region also get to know other eSchool students and make connections based on grade level, interests, and rationales for joining an online program.
- No Traditional School Building – Learning Centers – The SWCeS staffs two Learning Centers and provides a safe and friendly environment to support students. Students also have the option to work at home or in community centers such as libraries. Students are able to connect with their teachers for tutoring during virtual office hours available regularly.