Online Pathway to Graduation Program

The Online Pathway to Graduation (OPTG) is a school-year-long program that enables current and former Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) students who have completed at least one year of high school to meet some of the academic requirements for a Maryland high school diploma. OPTG instruction is delivered in online format. In addition, a teacher is present in a centrally located support center who monitors participant progress and facilitates individual instruction when needed. All diagnostic and unit tests will be proctored at one of the support centers.

Participants progress through their courses, completing assignments and taking assessments to demonstrate mastery of course objectives. As participants successfully complete each course, credit is awarded, thus progressing the participant toward the goal of earning a high school diploma. Participants are responsible for completing all Maryland and MCPS graduation requirements, including High School Assessments and student service learning requirements.


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Overview

Eligible participants must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Current or former MCPS high school students no longer enrolled, who have completed at least one year of high school.
  • Passed the Maryland High School Assessment (HSA) for any online HSA course needed; HSA-related OPTG courses may be taken for credit recovery only and not for original credit.
  • Have not earned a General Equivalency Diploma (GED).

Private school students and students who have never attended an MCPS high school are not eligible to participate in this program.

Participants access their classes online from any location with an internet connection.

Once registered, participants attend a mandatory orientation session to receive access information and review online course expectations.

Support sessions are available at three locations:

  • Northwest High School
    13501 Richter Farm Road
    Germantown, MD 20874
  • Gaithersburg High School
    101 Education Boulevard
    Gaithersburg, MD 20877
  • Albert Einstein High School
    11135 Newport Mill Road
    Kensington, MD 20895

Note: Each student in OPTG is assigned to only one support center.

The cost of the program is $300 for students not enrolled in an MCPS high school. MCPS students who are currently enrolled in an MCPS high school do not need to pay tuition.

The advantages include:

  • Students can work at home, school, or their assigned support center.
  • Students can access academic support from teachers at their assigned support center.
  • Students can earn credits to meet high school academic credit requirements.

Meet with your counselor to discuss OPTG program requirements and eligibility. Complete the online registration form with your counselor.

You can find out more about the OPTG program by:

  • Contacting the counseling office at your current high school or at the high school you last attended.
  • Contacting the Student Online Learning office at 240-740-3950.

Courses

English:

  • English 9 A/B, English 10 A/B*, English 11 A/B, English 12 A/B

Math:

  • Algebra 1 A/B*, Algebra 2 A/B, 2Yr Algebra 2 A/B, 2Yr Algebra 2 C/D, Geometry A/B, Precalculus A/B, Quantitative Literacy A/B, Statistics A

Science:

  • Biology A/B*, Environmental Science A/B, Physical Science A/B

Social Studies:

  • Modern World History A/B, NSL Government A/B*, U.S. History A/B

World Languages:

  • French 1 A/B*, Spanish 1 A/B*, Spanish 2 A/B*

* Courses that can only be taken for credit-recovery

Support Centers

Location:

Support sessions will be offered at three locations:

  • Northwest High School
    13501 Richter Farm Road
    Germantown, MD 20874
  • Gaithersburg High School
    101 Education Boulevard
    Gaithersburg, MD 20877
  • Albert Einstein High School
    11135 Newport Mill Road
    Kensington, MD 20895

Testing Sessions:

Testing sessions will be offered Monday through Thursday (when regular school is in session), 5:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m.

Support Staff

OPTG Administrative Staff:

Natasha Ezerski, Site Coordinator
Northwest High School

Sarah Fass, Site Coordinator
Northwest High School

Michelle Newton, Site Coordinator
Gaithersburg High School

Lisa Runyon, Site Coordinator
Gaithersburg High School

Rashemah Stridiron, Site Coordinator
Albert Einstein High School

Brian Beaubien, Supervisor
240-453-2470

FAQs

How do I log on from home?

What if I forget my username or password?

  • Email your site coordinator or your content teacher. She/he will e-mail you your username and/or reset the password to a temporary one so you can reset it and access your work.

When are the support centers open?

  • 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday WHEN REGULAR SCHOOL IS IN SESSION DURING THE DAY.

Do I need to arrive before a certain time?

  • Students should plan to arrive as close to 5:00 p.m. as posible to maximize instructional time.

How long will it take me to finish my course(s)?

  • It depends on how much time you devote to them. Most students finish a class in 3 to 4 months by working a few days a week (some take much less time and some longer). OPTG does not follow the semester designation of MCPS; as soon as you finish a course, you will receive a grade and credit for the course.

What if I need help from my content teacher?

  • Email your teacher. INCLUDE YOUR FULL NAME, COURSE TITLE & UNIT/ASSIGNMENT YOU ARE WORKING ON (ex., John Doe, Algebra 1A, 1.1.3).
  • Check your support center's schedule for when each of the content teachers will be there..

What do I do if I’m locked out of a quiz?

  • After two failed attempts at passing a quiz, the program locks the quiz until you contact your instructor.
  • Email your course teacher; he/she may ask you to complete additional work or come to CTI for support. The quiz is then unlocked by the instructor (which can be done remotely) so you can retake it.

When can I take a unit test?

  • You must have completed all the work for the unit prior to taking the test.
  • Monday – Thursday, 5–7 pm; your content teacher does not need to be present.

Can I take an online unit test at my school?

  • No, you must take unit tests at your support center during the hours above.

Can I come to the lab any night to work online?

  • Yes, students may complete work on site during the posted hours.

How often do I need to work online?

  • Login and work with course materials a minimum of 1 hour per week per course.
  • Complete all unit materials and attend a session at the support center to take a proctored unit test every two weeks (per course).
  • Students who do not meet these requirements will be moved from active status to waitlist. As active students complete courses and additional seats in the program open, waitlist students will be given the option to move back into active status.

What about snow days?

  • Inclement weather policies for MCPS will be followed. If schools have early dismissal or cancellation, the support centers are NOT open; if MCPS cancels afternoon/evening activities, the support centers are NOT open.

What if I have a question that was not addressed here?

  • Contact the Student Online Learning or by phone at 240-740-3950.
  • For specific content questions, email your OPTG teacher.

What if I have a question for APEX (the online program)?

  • APEX support is available 8 am – 10 pm Mon–Fri at 1-800-453-1454 or support@apexlearning.com.

I forget how to find the building for OPTG. Do you have directions?

  • Yes. See the "Directions" tab above.