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Education

Online students dance night away — just like anyone else

Four online schools host ‘virtual’ prom for students from throughout metro Denver

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A common concern about online schools is whether students get the same opportunities to socialize as their peers in traditional ones.

But they showed they can have just as much fun when students from four online schools recently enjoyed the time-tested tradition of prom.

“It’s something that all high school students look forward to, whether they attend a traditional school or a virtual school,” Teri Cady, head of school at Destinations Career Academy of Colorado, said in an email. “They make a night of it just like any other high school student.”

More than 150 students from areas as diverse as Westminster, Elbert County, Castle Rock, Colorado Springs and Northglenn all attended the “Black and Gold Masquerade,” hosted May 5 by Colorado Preparatory Academy, Destinations Career Academy, Pikes Peak Online School and Colorado Digital Board of Cooperative Education Services at the Riverwalk Clubhouse in Littleton.

Some students were attending their first dance, but at least two had met before the event.

Yadira Velez, 16, of Colorado Springs met her date, Keiren Brown, 17, of Green Valley Ranch, at last year’s event. They connected on Facebook afterward and see each other in person about once a month.

“I asked my friend if I should go up to him and say `hi,’ ” Velez said in a text after the prom. “I felt like I was never going to see him again, so I went for it… You don’t even know how much I’ve been waiting for prom this year.”

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