Utah Distance Learning Programs Comparison Chart

Laura built a nice comparison chart to summarize the most popular homeschool options offered through charter schools in Utah. For more detailed information on each program, check out our Distance Learning Series.

This is just Laura’s opinion, but hopefully it serves as a useful reference to guide you in the right direction.

RocketRatings 5c = good

RocketRatings 1c = bad

Utah Distance Learning Programs Comparison Chart

 My Tech HighCanyon GroveAISU@HOMELumenHarmony
RecommendationBest for students who prefer independence, interest-based learning, and third-party courses.Best for students living near Pleasant Grove who enjoy on-campus options and minimal requirements.Best for students living near Murray who are self-motivated and interested in extra-curricular activities.Best for students seeking face-to-face interaction, and third-party courses.Best for families seeking a wide range of options and living near a Harmony Learning Center.
Work PaceRocketRatings 5cRocketRatings 5cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 4c
Course OptionsRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 3cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 4c
PurchasesRocketRatings 5cRocketRatings 3cRocketRatings 2cRocketRatings 5cRocketRatings 4c
Face-to-Face ActivitiesRocketRatings 3cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 4cRocketRatings 5cRocketRatings 4c
General Information
Costfree (tax dollars)free (tax dollars)free (tax dollars)free (tax dollars)free (tax dollars)
State Testing with Opt-Out Optionyesyesyesyesyes
Teacher or Coach Providedyesyesyesyesyes

Additional information behind the rankings

Work Pace

Each program has it’s own requirements for participation and weekly reporting. For Laura, flexibility and simplicity are key.

  • My Tech High: Students demonstrate progress in each course by submitting weekly learning logs.
  • Canyon Grove: Students demonstrate progress in math and language arts by submitting weekly samples and quizzes.
  • AISU@HOME: Students submit portfolios each trimester to show progress, and then demonstrate mastery of core requirements before the end of the year.
  • Lumen: Students demonstrate competency of all school standards for their grade level by submitting weekly work samples (Return and Report).
  • Harmony: Student progress is tracked with attendance, except for flex courses. Flex courses require weekly or biweekly worksheets that demonstrate subject mastery.

Course Options

Each program offers courses directly as well as options for outside courses. For Laura, quality and flexibility are key.

  • My Tech High: Many online choices are available with student’s choice of at-home and third-party options easily reimbursed. More flexibility in core subjects since students have access to Utah Core material through Homeroom.
  • Canyon Grove: Their Resource Library enables families to build their own curriculums and borrow everything they need.
  • AISU@HOME: A selection of online and on-campus courses are available as well as student’s choice of at-home curriculum.
  • Lumen: Wide variety of choices from online classrooms, custom home-led curriculums, and third-party classes.
  • Harmony: Many online and at-home course options as well as face-to-face opportunities.

Purchases of Curriculum, Supplies, and Tuition

Each program has it’s own approach to alleviating homeschool expenses. For Laura, quantity and flexibility are key.

  • My Tech High: $1900 reimbursement is available for grades 1-12 (roughly half for k). Receive a $400 technology allowance ($300 the first year) plus $150 for custom-built courses or $300 for third-party courses (math, language arts, science or social studies, technology, plus one elective).
  • Canyon Grove: Resource Library aims to let families borrow everything they want. No third-party course tuition available. 
  • AISU@HOME: Learning Library aims to let families borrow everything they want. No third-party course tuition available.
  • Lumen: Funds for custom education spending varies depending on grade level: $700 (K), $1500 (1-8), $2500 (9-12). Lumen pays expenses directly on your behalf. No reimbursements necessary. Third-party course tuition is available.
  • Harmony: Up to $150 per Flex course per year. Up to $500 per year of additional funds for technology and other supplies. Up to $1000 for custom-built Learning Adventure Kits.

Face-to-Face Activities

Each program has it’s own options for face-to-face activities. For Laura, quantity and quality are key.

  • My Tech High: Maker Spaces. Occasional field trips and class activities are available. Third-party group classes are easily available.
  • Canyon Grove: Up to 1.5 days per week of on-campus classes (Epic Day and Specials Day), field trips, assemblies, and Discovery Space Center. Main campus in Pleasant Grove and extension campuses in Sandy and Draper.
  • AISU@HOME: Many options for classes, clubs, activities, field trips, and speaker events.
  • Lumen: Family Learning Center, learning labs, family activities and field trips. Third-party classes are easily available.
  • Harmony: Options Day for electives, Multi-Age Program for core classes and electives, or third-party provider classes. Campuses are located in Midvale, Lehi, Springville, and Roy.

So how about you? What is your favorite homeschool program? Should we add a program to our comparison table? Do you agree with Laura’s rankings? Discuss below.

10 Responses to Utah Distance Learning Programs Comparison Chart

  1. Sarah June 19, 2015 at 9:29 am #

    The Lumen Scholar Institute is a new program for the 2015-2016 school year http://www.lumenscholar.org/

    Looks fabulous so far.

    • Spencer June 19, 2015 at 9:03 pm #

      Thanks, Sarah. We’ll take a look!

      These homeschool programs are an exciting area right now. We have a feeling the next few years will bring lots of great new options. Thanks for pointing this one out!

  2. Helena March 31, 2016 at 11:29 pm #

    I’ve heard about DaVinci Academy in Ogden offering a Homeschool option, but I am new to all this. Can you find out?

    • Spencer April 1, 2016 at 7:21 pm #

      Yes, DaVinci Academy does have a Homeschooling option. Laura has a growing list of homeschooling programs to blog about in the coming months, and DaVinci is on her list. Hopefully our schedules permit blogging sooner rather than later!

  3. Tami Connolly May 23, 2016 at 1:29 pm #

    We are moving overseas (Ireland), do you know if any of these programs or others would support us?

    • Bonnie July 17, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

      It’s my understanding that if you will still be a Utah residentliving, but out of state temporarily, you would still be able to use the MTH and Harmony programs.

      • Leisa Watkins July 23, 2016 at 1:41 pm #

        Bonnie is correct. If they have a permanent residence in Utah and are out of state temporarily than they could use Harmony. They most be a permanent resident of Utah and maintain a home here.

  4. Leisa Watkins August 5, 2016 at 3:28 pm #

    Harmony Ed now has field trips more often with several field trips planned each month for 2016-2017. Some months will have field trips available every week, and occasionally there will be a couple to choose from in a week. These will be held at different locations throughout the state. Reservations for these field trips are made online using a simple reservation system and Harmony Plus or Learning Expedition funding can help cover the highly discounted cost of any field trips that are not free.

    Last year, Harmony Ed held workshops for students where guest speakers taught the students on topics like how to set goals, how to set-up their day for success, etc. There will be additional opportunities for students to learn again from guest speakers this coming year. One guest speaker planned for this year is one of the lost boys of the Sudan.

    Some additional activities held last year, by Harmony, were Field Days and a Living History day, where students presented what they have learned about an event or person in history. Due to the popularity of that program they are expanding to additional days where students can showcase what they are learning.

    In addition, parents can come participate in monthly face-to-face Parent Gatherings held in four different locations through-out the state. At these events they can learn what’s working for other parents, and learn things like reading strategies, organizing curriculum, etc. from experienced experts on both education and homeschooling.

    They also have a resource library, and have had one for years. Each student can check out learning materials and curriculum. This is in addition to all the other resources provided through Harmony Ed.

    With third-party classes, vendors are paid directly so parents do not have to wait for reimbursement and tie up their families money for months at a time. This also applies to tutoring.

    Families also don’t have to tie up family funds, or purchase curriculum and learning materials slowly, because they submit a list of the learning materials needed and Harmony purchases them and has them shipped directly to their home.

  5. Emily Prieto February 1, 2017 at 7:57 am #

    I can’t find anywhere on AISU’s website that they offer distance learning. These charters look great though.

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