As a typical freshman in high school, Chloe Eanes had developed a tightknit group of friends, and she was enjoying her time in high school, when she first began experiencing stomach pains. The pain was so severe that she went to the Emergency Room twice. She was eventually diagnosed with a stomach disorder called eosinophilic gastritis. This rare stomach disease causes the stomach to produce too many white blood cells when exposed to an allergen. “My stomach was rejecting all food, and during that same time, I was also diagnosed with anorexia— not to be confused with anorexia nervosa,” said Chloe. “Anorexia is a disease that makes it difficult to gain weight. I got down to just 88 pounds.” Her doctors were able to determine the allergens, so she could eliminate them from her diet, and they felt she could return to school. This meant she would no longer have access to homebound schooling that she received through her school. “I definitely did not feel ready to return to school,” she said. “But fortunately, we discovered Apex Learning Virtual School, so I could catch up on all of the schoolwork I had missed and get back on my feet. Attending ALVS has been so helpful for me throughout my recovery.” Chloe is now entering her junior year, and she said her health has definitely gotten better and she’s feeling well. Now she knows the allergens that cause her pain, and she said it’s pretty manageable to avoid them. “I was so lucky to have wonderful friends that I made in middle school who stuck with me throughout this entire experience,” she said. “Even after I got sick, they wanted to come visit me. During my sophomore year, I was finally able to hang out with them again. I don’t really miss public school. It’s never really been my thing to get excited about homecoming or prom or anything like that. I’m lucky because then I’m not disappointed that I’m missing out.” Chloe also believes online curriculum has also helped her to become more detail oriented. Taking ALVS courses has really helped me to understand new concepts, and I like how detailed the content is so that I can dig deeper on certain topics. “Taking ALVS courses has really helped me to understand new concepts, and I like how detailed the content is so that I can dig deeper on certain topics. I can learn more about certain things that are only shared in a general way in public school. I also like how they allow you to go back and study if you are confused about a question on a quiz. I can learn a concept again, and then I won’t stress out while taking the quiz.” She said that she appreciates her teachers at ALVS and how they are always available to answer her questions about assignments, or to explore new learning opportunities. “But more than anything, I love working from my couch, getting more sleep, and the fact that my cat is my classmate, rather another student sitting next to me who really doesn’t want to there.” Chloe is a recent recipient of the Jack Babani Scholarship for Individual Achievement. This scholarship recognizes students who exemplify academic achievement, unwavering persistence, and a commitment to overcoming obstacles. Winners of this scholarship also demonstrate the desire to challenge themselves to reach higher accomplishments, both in life and academia, a core value of ALVS. Congratulations, Chloe!