School schedule needs to change to asynchronous and synchronous

Rise+and+Grind.+Students+start+their+first+period+by+7%3A55+with+cameras+on+and+ready+for+class.+The+camera+policy+was+established+on+Dec.+7+2020+officially.+

Jocelyn Fetter

Rise and Grind. Students start their first period by 7:55 with cameras on and ready for class. The camera policy was established on Dec. 7 2020 officially.

Jocelyn Fetter , Reporter

This year has brought us a lot of uncertainty, especially with school. Everyday our lives are changing, and we never know what is going to come next. We have gone from traditional instruction, to a two week break, to an online setting with a little bit of live classes but a lot of doing things on our own time, to a hybrid model of live classes, back in person for a few days and now we’re online all day everyday. 

Every time we get comfortable with a routine, we are taken away from it and starting something new. As a student myself, I am being worn thin, and I need a change. 

Now before I begin I would just like to say that I appreciate everything that most of the teachers and principals are trying to do for us. I understand that these decisions are not easy and trust me I do understand that no matter what you do, not 100% of the people will be happy. With that being said, here is my proposal on how we should do schooling. 

As a student who has been in the School District for my many years of schooling, I have quickly noticed learning patterns that work the best for me and things I know help me learn better. For example, I am a visual learner to a T. I always have been, so the live classes really do work for me. So that for the most part is good, and I applaud the dedication of the teachers who provide those. 

However, sitting in an online setting for hours and hours at a time is not cutting it for me anymore, nor my peers around me. My generation is one of the last generations who grew up for the most part without a cell phone in our hands at such a young age. We were the last group of kids to be home when the streetlights came on and limited our screen time. I always thought screen time was a joke when schools and commercials drilled it into my brain, but now I understand the severity. 

With that being said, our asynchronous and synchronous days were the best use of our time, and they should be brought back into full effect. Sitting kids, no matter what age, in front of a computer screen for hours with no end is getting us nowhere. Online classes 6-7 hours a day versus being in school 6-7 hours a day are two totally different ball games. 

We students are being physically and mentally drained from being on the computer this long. When we did the asynchronous and synchronous model, I was at my prime as a student thus far. The schedule allowed me to get my classes done all at once in the morning (Monday and Wednesday) and then use the afternoon to work on my school work, and (Tuesday and Thursday) our schedule flipped; this also left Fridays open to work on everything I didn’t have a chance to work on. 

This new schedule has students online from 7:55 a.m. until 2:40, never taking our eyes off of the screen.  I end school every single day with a pounding headache, and I am so mentally and physically worn out that I don’t even want to do anything with the rest of my day. I have taken more naps since this hybrid schedule than I have the entire last school year… It’s too much! 

This schedule is making us miserable. My grades are lower than they have been all year, and I never miss homework assignments. I take the extra mile in my classes; I don’t like seeing myself fail, but even with the 100% I’m giving, it still doesn’t seem like it’s enough.

We aren’t being disrespectful. We aren’t simply “choosing not to do the work”. We aren’t “slacking off”. We have no motivation anymore. It’s cold, we’re drained, we miss our normal environment, we have nothing left to give. I know it’s hard to understand, but put yourselves in our shoes. We are not trying to upset you. We are not trying to cause an argument, we’re simply asking you to take a look at what helps us the best. No one has ever had to live like this before. We’re like rats in cages being tested; we’re the first trial run. 

Nothing about any of this is easy; I get that. I know that everyone is doing the best they can;, that’s why I’m hoping you listen to my proposal and listen to the students. We just want this to be the best that it can be for us right now.