Since 2003, Henry County schools has offered online courses to high school students in order to provide flexibility in meeting the requirements for graduation. In the early 2000's students engaged in courses that were much like online textbooks and had class discussions with teachers. HCS worked closely with other metro Atlanta districts to develop the best online coursework possible with the teachers we had within our districts. For the rest of the decade we offered online coursework to thousands of students throughout our growing school district.
The desire and need for online courses grew and Henry County Online Academy was born.
In 2010 the US Department of Education publish a report of meta-analysis of the research regarding online and blended learning which indicated that students who engaged in quality online learning faired well compared to traditional face-to-face learners but when students have access to a teacher for a portion of their instruction in combination with online resources (blended learning) the results were very promising.
HCS took the research seriously and began to investigate and redesign the experience students received through our online learning offerings. In 2010, the schools system's Superintendent Dr. Ethan Hildreth charged the school district to create a full time blended school that uses the best of the research to meet the needs of our students.
A team of stakeholders from the community and with the school district came together to form and create the conditions for Impact Academy. The essence of our charge from this group was to create opportunities for students 6-12 to participate in a blended learning program either full time or on a part time basis.