What is Outschool and how does it work?
Outschool is a community marketplace of online classes for kids. We help parents find and register for great classes that are offered outside of regular school. We help teachers, both professional and amateur, manage and promote their classes to parents. Our focus is on small-group, live online classes, though we support a variety of other formats as well.
You pick classes that your learners are most excited about and enroll with your credit card. One enrolled, you can visit your Schedule page to find both a Classroom page with full class details and a button to directly enter the Zoom meeting.
Intro to Outschool Webinar:
If you're new to Outschool, we now offer a free introductory webinar for parents to learn all the basics of Outschool, including how to find the right class, how to use Zoom during class, how to successfully prepare for class, and more.
Sign up for an upcoming Intro to Outschool webinar on Zoom. You'll see a drop-down menu next to Time where you can select your preferred upcoming time and register.
We value any feedback you provide after the webinar!
Additional support choosing classes:
If you need help selecting classes, consider requesting a free Class List. The Outschool Class List is a comprehensive list of classes that meets your learner’s interests, availability, and other preferences. By providing us with some basic information, we can generate and send you a customized list of classes for your learner.
If you’re looking for additional support in creating a schedule for your learner, you can request a custom Outschool Schedule. Our expert Planner team will work closely with you to select the best classes for your learner(s), combining them into a compelling customized schedule. Custom schedules are free if you plan to enroll in $100 worth of class over the next 30 days. Otherwise, you will be charged a $20 custom schedule fee.
How do online classes work?
The format varies based on the teacher and the class. Most are live online classes, meaning they involve set meeting times using Zoom video conferencing. Most classes use messaging through Outschool to handle other communication. Some teachers also use other apps to help run their classes, in which case they will let you know. Parents are often surprised at the fantastic learning experiences that can occur through an online format.
We don't homeschool - can I still use Outschool?
Absolutely! Outschool classes are designed for a wide variety of learners and families, with an array of timing and formats to meet your needs. Many of our families take classes outside of traditional school hours.
What are the benefits of Outschool compared to other online learning programs?
Outschool focuses on small-group, live, interactive, online classes, delivering excellent learning experiences. Every teacher is screened, background checked, and provided with quality training by our team.
This format provides a high degree of social interaction between learners, teachers, and the Outschool community.
Outschool offers unparalleled diversity when it comes to teachers, subjects, and learners. With classes on everything from Fortnite to world dance to marine biology, you can (almost) always find a great class to match your learners’ passions.
How much does it cost?
Outschool is free to join, and each class is priced separately based on class format, teacher preference, and overall Outschool class pricing.
What kind of technology and materials do I need?
For our live classes, we encourage your learners to participate in their natural learning environment, using the device of their choice. Outschool works on all major web browsers, and we use Zoom for live video meetings. You can prepare for your first class by downloading Zoom ahead of time. You’ll need a working webcam and microphone, and a solid internet connection. We encourage you to read up on our technical requirements and learn more about preparing for your first class.
We also offer Flexible schedule, or “Flex” classes, which do not rely on live meetings and thus do not require Zoom or a webcam and microphone. These classes provide learners the opportunity to engage with the material on their own schedules, without needing to interact live with other learners. Despite the lack of live interaction, Flex classes still provide the quality interactions our users have come to expect on Outschool through written communication and other assignments.
In Flex classes, learners and teachers conduct class asynchronously through the use of posts in the Outschool Classroom that include pre-recorded lessons, announcements, assignments, and other resources. Read more on Flex classes.
What kind of quality or vetting do you do for your classes?
We review the professional background and education of all teachers and select for those who have teaching experience, subject matter expertise, or a unique passion they want to share with young learners. Read more about our teacher quality policies.
Each class is reviewed and approved by our team before public listing, ensuring every class meets our standards for unique content, learning goals, teacher expertise, class experience, and more. Read about our class listing standards.
What ages and what types of curriculum does Outschool offer?
Outschool classes are open to learners ages 3 - 18, with class listings specifying the age range for which a class is designed. If you have questions about whether the class may be right for a child outside the recommended ages, please message the teacher directly.
Curriculum varies greatly for courses across the site, and you can find everything from traditional curricula like Algebra 2 to obscure topics that your learners might be excited about like a Descendants dance class or Minecraft architecture.
Please note that while we do not follow a preset curriculum or any state curricula, each class listing will specify learning objectives and what experience you can expect from class.
My learner has special needs. Is Outschool a fit?
We welcome learners of all abilities at Outschool. Many Outschool teachers have backgrounds in teaching children with various abilities. Others may be open to it. If there is a class you like, message the teacher directly and see if they are open to making accommodations within their existing classroom for your child based on their needs. See our article on learning with special needs on Outschool.
Can adults take your classes?
Outschool classes are designed for learners ages 18 and below. To ensure learner safety and quality instruction, adults may not join. If you are a parent supervising a learner during class, we ask that you stay off-screen as much as possible. If your learner requires more active participation or supervision from you during class, please reach out to the teacher to let them know prior to class.
Are you a charter school vendor?
Yes, Outschool is a pre-approved vendor for over 50 charter schools in California, Alaska, Arizona, Wisconsin, and Canada. If you'd like to register for Outschool classes, ask your charter school to partner with us. Read more about how to use charter funds.
Do you work with school districts?
Yes, Outschool partners with public, private and charter schools in a variety of ways, providing free online teacher training, and partnering with districts to help them make Outschool classes available to their students and communities. Read more about Outschool for Schools.
Already taking Outschool classes? See our New Parent FAQ.