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CCIU Celebrates its Online Collaborative Learning Center Grand Opening

The Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU) celebrated the official opening of its Online Collaborative Learning Center on Wednesday, September 15, 2021, in Downingtown, PA. The Online Collaborative Learning Center was designed to provide the Communications and Learning Solutions Division with a space that fosters creativity and provides BVA teachers and students with various in-person and virtual learning opportunities. 

CCIU Board members, Chester County School Authority members, Chester County superintendents, administrators and staff enjoyed an outdoor ceremony where CCIU Executive Director Dr. George F. Fiore spoke with pride.

“Throughout the past 19 months, the Brandywine Virtual Academy has been open and has been able to support our students and school districts when they without a doubt needed us most,” said Dr. Fiore, executive director of the CCIU, “This could not be done without the hard work of many, many people. Because of our leadership team and staff, our students, families and partner districts know that they are receiving the best online learning instruction in the commonwealth, taught by Pennsylvania State Certified teachers who reside in their communities. This is why the Brandywine Virtual Academy is a premier choice for online learning and continues to grow at exponential rates.”

Other speakers included State Senator Carolyn Comitta, CCIU Board President Bonnie Wolff and the Chair of School Authority Thomas Wolpert, who each spoke of the ways that the CCIU’s Online Collaborative Learning Center is providing educational opportunities to the students in Chester County and beyond.

The opening ceremony was followed by an interactive tour of the unique space, highlighting the many learning resources for Brandywine Virtual Academy (BVA) students and teachers, including a science lab. The CCIU Online Collaborative Learning Center is home to BVA technical support, communications, marketing, special events and admissions departments of the Communications and Learning Solutions Division.

The highlight of the tour was the virtual question and answer session with current BVA students in the student drop-in center. Students interacted with guests of the event and discussed their experiences with BVA and how beneficial the offering is in each of their different circumstances. The CCIU Collaborative Learning Center’s student drop-in center was designed for students who prefer in-person instructional support. The drop-in center also serves as a space for teachers and staff to collaborate and connect with students virtually.

The CCIU Collaborative Learning Center opening ceremony and tour also celebrated the rapid growth of BVA. At the start of the school year, BVA’s enrollment increased by 84.22%, with over 3,085 students enrolled at the time. This number is expected to rise as more students and districts seek virtual offerings.

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The CCIU celebrates the official opening of the CCIU Online Collaborative Learning Center with a ribbon cutting ceremony. (Left to right, Mark Slider, Chip Harper, John DeMillion, Joe Lubitsky, Carolyn Comitta, Dr. George F. Fiore, Bonnie Wolff, Dr. Joseph O’Brien, Thomas Wolpert, Dr. Steve Gerhard and Mary Jeanne Curley)