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Virtual Academy

Virtual Academy will be a fully remote learning option that serves a limited number of students who qualify as medically fragile with documented health conditions or medical needs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below are details on eligibility and the application process.

The application window for Virtual Academy was closed on August 6th. Exceptions to the deadline will be granted for students who are new to the district or have new diagnoses. A new diagnosis is a student who previously did not qualify as medically fragile and has been newly diagnosed with one of the conditions on the list after August 6th.

How to Apply

1. Download Eligibility Form

Students who meet the medical fragility requirements and are new to CPS or newly diagnosed may apply to Virtual Academy by using the COVID-19 Health Eligibility Form. The entire form must be completed to be reviewed.

Download form - English

Download form - Spanish

2. Contact Medical Provider

Contact a licensed medical provider to complete Part 2 of the COVID-19 Health Eligibility Form. Licensed medical providers include Medical Doctor (MD), Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO), Physician Assistant (PA) and Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN).

3. Submit Eligibility Form

Submit the COVID-19 Health Eligibility Form by email to The application window is only open to students who are new to CPS or newly diagnosed.

Program Overview

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is excited to welcome students back to daily in-person learning in the 2021-2022 school year!

While the vast majority of students will return to school five days a week, we anticipate that a small subset of children will need to continue remote learning based on medical needs verified by a healthcare provider. To support these students, CPS is launching Virtual Academy: a central model of remote instruction. All instruction in the Virtual Academy will need to be in compliance with Illinois School Code 10-29. Students will be able to transition back into in-person learning (at the quarter mark for elementary school, and at the semester mark for high school) based on their evolving situations. All students not enrolled in the Virtual Academy will attend in person learning next year.

Applications for Virtual Academy will be approved through the Office of Student Health & Wellness.

Virtual Instruction

Classes will be offered in a 100 percent virtual format, and will include asynchronous time for screen and movement breaks.

  • Instruction will be provided by CPS teachers.  Candidates interested in the Virtual Academy may apply at > Job Board > Search FY22 Virtual Academy beginning Monday, June 21, 2021.
  • Students in district-run schools will retain their seat in the CPS school they would have attended in the fall of 2021 for as long as they are enrolled in the Virtual Academy. Students enrolled in CPS charter schools should contact their school for more information.
  • Elementary school students will be enrolled for at least a quarter-long commitment.
  • High school students or students taking high school courses for credit will be enrolled for a semester-long commitment. 
  • Special education and bilingual services will be available through the Virtual Academy.
  • While the Virtual Academy will offer as many course options as possible, some specialized programs may not be available.
  • Activity and athletic program participation will be approved on a case-by-case basis.


COVID-19 Health Eligibility Form -  [ ENGLISH ] [ SPANISH ]

Virtual Academy Guide - [ ENGLISH ] [ SPANISH ]

If you have specific questions about our health and safety protocols, or if you are in need of being connected with a primary healthcare provider, please contact the Office of Student Health and Wellness (OSHW) at (773) 553-5437 or For general questions about reopening, please visit the Reopening Support page at

Frequently Asked Questions

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