Connections Academy Sucks Customer Reviews and Feedback

From Everything.Sucks

Connections Academy is a for-profit corporate provider of online school products and services to virtual schools for grades K-12, including full-time online schools bearing the "Connections Academy" name across the country. It is based in Columbia, Maryland and is part of Pearson's Online & Blended Learning K-12 group. It supports public online schools for grades K-12 across the United States.

Connie shared her experience with Connections Academy, "This is the most frustrating, inefficient group of management I have ever seen. My daughter attended several years and when we moved from N to S California, apparently the paperwork was not done properly so they dropped her. No phone call to say the paperwork is not correct (but of course they say they called me). In May, after all of the bright green checkmarks saying all is good to go, AND after speaking to someone from Connections Academy saying that everything looks "good to go," I assumed that everything was good to go. It is July 24th, and I just found out that we submitted one of the papers incorrectly and that she cannot attend next year because they closed their enrollment! Thank you so much for letting me know when you read the wrong paperwork! Was it some lazy worker not wanting to follow up because it is so much easier just to X the account? This is not my first bad experience with Connections Academy but certainly my last."


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K-5 Teacher (Former Employee) says

"Administration highly unprofessional and clearly had “favorites” For a virtual school - expectation that teachers were tethered to their computers for 9 hours/day - monitored through Lync - Homeschool/Digital instructional model and “Live Lessons” did not foster student growth and development... no true way to monitor."

Educator/Teacher (Current Employee) says

"I currently work at South Carolina Connections Academy. This is a for profit school owned Pearson Inc. and functions under the guise of a Public Charter School. The sole purpose is to make money, therefore student achievement/retention rate/graduation rate are important only to the extent that it allows the school to remain open. Student learning is not a priority. Academic Dishonesty among students is rampant and very few student requirements are enforced in regards to meeting actual legal attendance regulations. Teachers and other educational professionals are expected to do as they are told even if practices are legally questionable.. Those who voice an opinion are targeted and bullied by administrators. I have witnessed the Counseling Managers repeatedly belittle and harass knowledgeable and experienced staff members who will not support their unethical behaviors. I have seen teachers basically forced out of the school and/or terminated if they are not liked by an administrator. The school wants young employees that they can totally manipulate. The administrators or "Leadership Team" as they call themselves have little to no experience and they were moved into administrative positions with no credentials. They are hired because they will do whatever they are told to do. The managers that I have worked with are not trustworthy. They always play favorites and there are different rules for different employees. The pay at this school is much lower than the state teacher salary scale and the work load is intense. You are allowed to work from home except for when you"

SPED teacher (Former Employee) says

"WARNING: Please review ALL other online/remote education opportunities BEFORE applying to this company!!! Management and policies changed throughout the years, leaving employees with no chances for advancement, too many meetings (unnecessary as well), below national average pay for 30+ hours per week. No benefits if you are classified as "part-time. Company managers say they are "all about their employees" but they are NOT. They do not back up employees when school officials have a problem and blame employee. Also, micro managing goes on at EVERY single level. They tell you they "respect you and your experience", but do NOT let you do your work, without constant and continual CRITICISM. This is very stressful and can make anyone a nervous wreck. This company is NOT professional, mainly because of they way they treat their employees. My advice: Go elsewhere for employment!"

Learning Coach (Former Employee) says

"Not fun place to work at as an intern, but great coworkers. Definitely learned a lot from the people around me. However, time management is hard to keep up with in this company.NaNa"

Special Education Teacher (Former Employee) says

"It's a great concept. But it's run by horrible people and the focus is never about the students, it's about the metrics that look good to corporate. I would only recommend working here if they had a drastic change of management and culture."

Teacher (Former Employee) says

"This job is anything but fulfilling. Unfair management and very low pay. Workload is overwhelming. Feels more like a call center than an actual education related position. Your job depends on the amount of calls you do."

School Teacher (Former Employee) says

"You work very hard for very LITTLE pay. Difficult staffing and no support. The CEO is money driven and is only concerned with upper management."

Administrative Assistant (Temporary) says

"I was notified that I would be receiving a promotion from a Temporary employee to a Permanent employee effective July 1st. On June 24th I was advised that my LAST DAY was June 28th. All of a sudden NO ONE KNEW ANYTHING about my promotion to a PERMANENT employee. I was lied to. Worked there since October 5th, have a Masters in Education. This company CONTINUES to make promises that they do not honor. I was BLINDSIDED by this company that receives STATE. & FEDERAL FUNDING. Persons who are NOT certified are being elevated to these positions.I believe an investigation is in coffee & teado not honor their promises to employees."

Special Education Teacher (Former Employee) says

"The best part of the job was that about 5% of the staff were very brilliant and diligent teachers. I actually met a few life-long friends. Unfortunately, none of the administrators have had extensive leadership experience in a "real" physical, traditional school. This is verifiable information. If you are an intelligent person who voices concerns that could improve your productivity and that of others, you may easily make enemies with the "catty girl squad" leadership team. You may be targeted and overlooked for your accomplishments. In fact, you may be targeted if you don't "look" the part. I was in an interview of an older applicant who, as soon as she left, one of the leaders made fun of her gray roots while some of the panel nervously laughed and others were in disbelief. Overall, If you're good with consistent ego stroking and/or are a spineless person, then this is the spot for you! Also, pay is not commensurate with education and experience. There are no salary scales.Working from homeIrrational, inexperienced "leaders""

High School Teacher (Former Employee) says

"Management's only priority is data, data, data and preserving the high school graduation rate by any means necessary. School leadership is capricious and duplicitous. Students matter NOT--any efforts teachers make to help students who actually want to pass their courses and get back on track to graduate are neither acknowledged nor recognized. In this school culture, it's best to nod your head in agreement, do as they say, and keep your mouth shut. Those that voice contrary opinions are systematically targeted and purposefully micro-managed to death, thus creating such an unpleasant work environment that one will either comply with leadership's requests or quit the company.Healthcare insurance is awesomeCapricious, duplicitous management, unpleasant work environment, no opportunity for growth"

Teacher (Former Employee) says

"The leadership at this school does not care about their employees. Teacher input is a joke. It is a dog eat dog environment. The administration only cares about their own careers. I am so glad that I left.Free coffeeJust a number, no support, only negative input"

Social Studies Teacher (Current Employee) says

"Poor salaries and authoritarian management style. Little attention is paid to education. The goal is to gather as many students as possible and collect their tuition, so that a huge administrative staff can collect excessive salaries. The school pits employees against one another and there is no sense of unity or moral compass.Work from home is allowed on a limited basis.Stagnant wages for teachers. No input from professionals."

Administrative Assistant (Current Employee) says

"Consistency in management is absent. No team work. Divisive and unfair treatment. Pay is low compared to cost of living and the amount of work to be done. Some are allowed to choose what hours they work while others are expected to actually abide by rules.BenefitsToo many to list"

Open Enrollment Specialist (Former Employee) says

"Not a good idea to work for Iowa Connections Academy. Management is harsh! Typical day at work is not so bad. Principal does not usually come in to office, but when he does, everyone is on is goodPrincipal is very abbrasive and hard to work for"

Teacher (Former Employee) says

"There is nothing positive about this experience. Teachers and students alike are treated poorly. Administration is often unlicensed and does not follow state mandated policies.NothingTreatment of teachers and students, unprofessional"

School employee (Former Employee) says

"SCCA is a for profit school - this creates a unique culture in the public school world. The best thing about the job is working from home. You are expected to work more than 40 hours a week and the work load is intense. The managers are very young and inexperienced. They are often very uptight and anxious. This is the first school job that many of them have ever had .Every move that you make is micromanaged and very often criticized. You basically are to do what you are told with no question. You can be terminated at any time without warning. Benefits and pay are not the same as what you would receive in a state public school setting. However the working from home outweighs the benefits for most people. There are some very nice people who work here and the quality of education that the school provides is good. Employees are just treated poorly.Work from homeManagement and Pay"

Teacher (Former Employee) says

"I taught for over 5 years at Connections and when I started, it was an incredible place to work! I had excellent colleagues and a great manager, the students were awesome! Then, as they grew, the people supposedly making the decisions and the merge with Pearson has now made it a corporate culture where students are "clients" and they are not valued, just numbers. Teachers often have up to 300 students and are not compensated extra for this. You are expected to call each student 3 times a semester and keep track of it, as well as do 4-5 Professional Development sessions every month. Endless meetings and check-ins with managers who micro-manage you, some managers who never even taught as long as you, are telling you how to teach when they are just clueless. You get sick and personal days but are not allowed to take more than 2 days off in a row and are told to work over holiday breaks. There are barely 6 weeks off during the summer and you are expected to write goals and discuss with your manager every semester, which is useless. Every year, the teaching structure changed. You are required to get multiple teaching licenses in many states and often the person in charge doesn't check into it and just says to get it and some states require you to take their teaching tests in their state only. They spent all this time and effort dividing teachers into regions and getting licenses in certain states, only to abandon that again and make it confusing. Teaching is on 2 platforms and you have to keep track of which students are where. Teachers are monitored on an online messengerGreat Students and Fellow TeachersTop-Down Management; Changes Every Year are Confusing"

Middle School Math Teacher (Former Employee) says

"At one point I had over 400 math students! All email and grading had to be done within 24 hours. Management would threaten to fire you or put you on performance plans if numbers were not met. Little room for autonomy or creativity. The other teachers were great, though."

Teacher (Former Employee) says

"This company has not taken into consideration what it costs to live in California. The flexibility it once offered is being taken away as well as the ability to work remotely. The perks, once offered, to compensate for the low salary are now going away. The best trait about the company are the current employees are great to work with and for but they will soon be gone because the culture is workers, students, familiesremote working being taken away and pay is below industry standard"

School Counselor (Current Employee) says

"In the beginning, it seemed too good to be true. Everyone seemed super nice and supportive. It really seemed like a family culture where everyone cared about you. Over time I began to notice the amount of micromanaging. There is no autonomy as a school counselor. Every decision that we make is scrutinized from what courses we can add for students, to what our counseling sessions should look like. I have witnessed harrassment of coworkers and different people have different rules. The flexibility and work life balance is great. But I'm not sure that its worth the trade for autonomy and respect."

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