TOPPENISH, Wash., – A student who once felt like she would never fit in to Yakima’s West Valley High School and was in danger in dropping out is graduating a year early instead.
The 17-year-old, Chania Vachon, turned her academic career around with the help of an online program started by the Toppenish School District called CATS or Computer Academy Toppenish Schools.
About 115 students are enrolled and nearly a third of them are from other Yakima Valley districts. This year, eight CATS students will earn high school diplomas.
Statewide there are 60 online schools. The state office of public instruction says about 2% of state students – about 20,000 children – are taking classes online.