Life is never a straight path, nor does it show favoritism to anyone. Therefore, to keep up with life’s fluidity, we as people have to adapt to every challenge and new situation we encounter. In this year, the world is experiencing a situation that obligates everyone to change their lifestyle and adapt to new circumstances. As you may have guessed, I am referring to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Being a student, this has been a blessing as much as a hindrance to my daily life. So, for this post I’ll be getting a bit personal as I explain how being a virtual student has affected the aspects of what “school” is supposed to be.
Knowing 2020 was going to be the start of my last year as a high schooler, I had many plans for myself. Extracurricular classes, sponsored tours, voluntary trips, family visits, and the like. I wanted my senior year to be more easy-going and rewarding for all the accomplishments I’ve earned throughout high school. But when everything got cancelled or rescheduled, I realized that my life was going in a completely different direction. Instead of being on the beaches of Turk and Caicos with family, I was quarantined at home while taking online dual enrollment classes. And now that school starts again, being a student becomes something a bit more complicated. Instead of teachers and staff working with students to stay focused and productive, us students are now 100% responsible for themselves. And while that’s nothing to feel stressed about, it does get frustrating when it’s hard to be productive at home with other residents of your home. Many students struggled with procrastination or house duties that kept them from doing their academic works. And there were others that had questions and concerns that couldn’t be answered well enough or in time. Without the abundance of resources and assistance from experienced adults, students were left disoriented and hopeless.
In turns of teachers, it’s clear to see that they have their own set of challenges as well. Many good teachers see their job not as an obligation, but as a passion. As much as they wanted to see their new students this school year, they understood the importance of public safety. Now teachers have to use unfamiliar technology and change their curriculum to something more fitting for online schooling. As simple as it sounds, not everyone is tech savvy and not every digital resource is user-friendly. Troubles with digital classes has led to websites crashing, glitching, and missing important information. Moreover, it must be stressful to work in new conditions where there’s pressure from administrations and the parents of students. What once was a job of educating and inspiring new generations could turn out to be a job of lecturing and handing out assignments to keep school simple and efficient during such stressful times.
It’s not easy for anyone, but it is possible to overcome. Now with online schooling, patience and consideration is the best thing we can do for each other at the moment. Though it’s frustrating and cumbersome, I still hope for a good school year. And that maybe, the next year will be the redemption year for us all.