COVID Takes Over Class

Virtual Vs. In School

Students+faced+the+decision+of+going+to+school+in+person+or+virtually+this+year.+

Lauren Girty

Students faced the decision of going to school in person or virtually this year.

Faith White, Writer

When asked to picture what comes to mind when thinking of school, the average response would involve desks, pencils, and students. As students head into this new school year, things look a little different. It becomes more likely for students to see desk shields, computer screens, and even empty desks, due to the lack of students in each class. A portion of students will have a new setting for their classes: at home. With these changes come debate, how does virtual school affect students differently than in person classes? 

One common misconception about online classes states that students cannot learn or retain information as easily as those physically in class. Virtual senior, Kyndal James, contradicts this idea by claiming the benefits of online class due to the fact that students can finish work on their own schedule without having to leave their home.

“You get to work at your own pace, and it’s helpful for students who get anxiety at school or about school,” James said. “You also have more free time.”

Although not the traditional way to have class, virtual school comes with many positive aspects while also keeping students safe from the virus that has taken over 2020. Students can learn at their own pace, remain in their own environment, and keep their assignments organized in Canvas. This year has brought on a lot of stress for students attempting to navigate a new distanced-learning lifestyle and keeping up with their workload. Online school can help students to take the worry away of wearing masks to class and keeping their distance from their peers. 

“Even though wearing masks is super annoying sometimes, it is a sacrifice that students are willing to take to stay in the classroom.” Senior, Chloey Coker said. 

When comparing, the benefits of having students on campus come to light as well. In-person students gain skills through social interaction with peers, maintaining face-to-face communication with teachers, and having more opportunities to ask questions when learning the lesson rather than waiting for an email response.

“You have the teacher teaching you right in front of you and showing you how to do things in person, which makes a big difference for me,” Coker said.

With this new year comes new challenges for the students attending class in person. The mandatory masks, the distanced desks/hallways, and the constant re-applying of hand sanitizer. Although this school year looks different, it creates a chance for all Amarillo High students to support one another by striving to stay safe, both at home and on campus.