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State Board for Charter Schools Confirms Virtual School Selections; Chancellor Arizona Connections Academy Ranked First.

PHOENIX, July 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Having passed its site readiness demonstration with flying colors, Chancellor Arizona Connections Academy (CA2) was officially approved on Monday by the State Board for Charter Schools as one of Arizona's new virtual public schools. The Board rated CA2 as its top choice -- and only K-8 program -- from among 29 applicants for the extended virtual pilot, giving students across Arizona and their families a new, top- quality option for the coming school year.

"The ranking by the State Board for Charter Schools affirms the value of the CA2 model, which is based on proven curriculum, superior materials and best practices," said Barbara Dreyer, president of Connections Academy. "For Arizona families looking for an alternative to the traditional brick-and- mortar school, the Board's approval translates into access to a high-quality, highly accountable complete school experience. Many students have situations that are better addressed through CA2's personalized learning program that combines textbooks with technology."

CA2 is a partnership between Connections Academy and Chancellor Beacon Academies. Students who are entering grades 1-8 and were enrolled in public or charter school in 2002-03 are eligible to participate in CA2. School will start at CA2 around Sept. 15.

"The Chancellor Beacon family is certainly pleased to now officially offer CA2 as an option for families everywhere in Arizona," said Nancy Hall, vice president of Arizona operations for Chancellor Beacon Academies.

Families can learn more about CA2 and determine if virtual public school is the right choice for their student by attending one of the information sessions scheduled around Arizona:
 * 1:30 p.m., Thursday, July 31 Chancellor Charter School at West
 Gilbert, Gilbert
 * 6:30 p.m., Thursday, July 31 Chancellor Charter School at Bell
 Canyon, Phoenix
 * 1:30 p.m., Monday, Aug. 4 Marriott Courtyard, Mesa
 * 6:30 p.m., Monday, Aug. 4 Sheraton San Marcos, Chandler
 * 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 5 Charles C. Royall Memorial Library,
 Lake Havasu City
 * 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 5 Charles C. Royall Memorial Library,
 Lake Havasu City
 * 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 6 Best Western Kings Inn & Suites,
 Kingman
 * 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 6 Best Western Kings Inn & Suites,
 Kingman
 * 1:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 7 Ramada Inn Chilton, Yuma
 * 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 7 Ramada Inn Chilton, Yuma


Families also can apply for the program online at http://www.connectionsacademy.com/ and can call 1-800-382-6010 for more details about CA2 and the information sessions.

Enrollment applications are being accepted now and Arizona public school students can begin their CA2 "school without walls" experience in September. As many as 400 students will get to chew gum in class, play hackysack for recess, make ice cream in a bag for science lab, and work through a challenging curriculum tailored to their individual learning style, strengths, weaknesses and interests.

The program uses technology as an important tool to manage instruction, facilitate communication among teachers, learning coaches and students, and to provide enriching curriculum, materials and activities. Students interact with technology in developmentally appropriate ways as determined by their instructors and parents.

Public school students throughout Arizona can register for CA2 under the state's open enrollment law. Because CA2 is being offered by the Arizona Department of Education and the Arizona Board for Charter Schools, there is no tuition or fee to enroll.

Chancellor Beacon Academies, Inc. serves more than 18,000 students, from pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade, at 63 public charter schools and two private schools across the nation. The company is the second largest school management organization in the U.S. and is noted for schools that feature smaller class sizes and high academic standards that emphasize accountability for results. Further information is available at http://www.chancellorbeacon.com/ .

Connections Academy, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Educate, Inc., which also owns Sylvan Learning Centers and other Sylvan services for K-12 students. For more information on Connections Academy, visit http://www.connectionsacademy.com/ or call 1-800-382-6010.

CONTACT: Sara Fleury, ext. 226, or Kati Spencer, ext. 228, both of B.J. Communications, +1-602-277-9530, for Chancellor Arizona Connections Academy; or Mickey Revenaugh of Connections Academy, +1-718-284-4495

Web site: http://www.chancellorbeacon.com/

Web site: http://www.connectionsacademy.com/
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Date:Jul 30, 2003
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