Zooming Through the Year

The 2019-2020 school year suddenly comes to an end due to COVID-19. Learn how students and staff are reacting to the current situations.

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Hannah Shin

Zoom is the main way teacher teacher their classes and answer any questions students may have. It was a new experience to most students when they first used it.

Hannah Shin, PLPulse Writer

March 12, 2020, the PLHS school year suddenly comes to an end. The community closes, and everyone frantically stocks up on toilet paper.  

Now, PLCS is in “Phase 2” of online learning. “Phase 2” refers to classes are resuming, and students are learning in their homes with the information and lectures their teachers give them. 

“Online classes are going surprisingly well,” junior Lydia Zink said. “I think we adjusted to it really well because we’re so used to going on technology.” 

Technology is a major component for almost all students’ learning because it is the main way for teachers to communicate with students.  

 “I’m on my phone frequently so I can reply to emails and communicate as best as I can,” social studies teacher Bre Wilton said. 

In these changing times, there are certain advantages for e-learning. 

“I’m less stressed out, and it’s nice that grading isn’t as strict,” Zink said. 

The school district is asking teachers to grade students in a “no-harm approach” so the work they do will not affect their grades as much as they would in a normal class. Students also say they have more freedom to fit school into their schedules.  

“I like how our school is being really flexible and giving teachers time to prepare because it’s such a big change for everyone,” Wilton said. 

However, there are also disadvantages to online schooling. 

“I feel like it’s harder time management-wise because school days were more structured than they are now,” Zink said. 

Students don’t need to attend all Zoom classes, which can lead to a less organized school schedule and cause laziness. Another disadvantage is the connections between students and teachers. 

“The relationship with students was severed and I only got to see students for only three quarters of the year- my second semester AP students only had me for half a semester,” Wilton said. “We could’ve had a lot of fun this year and gotten a lot further in class.” 

Teachers value these relationships with their students because they want them to have a good high school experience while also learning the necessary information. 

“It doesn’t feel the same in a Zoom class because in normal classes, I can break up the lecture how I want to and show videos, but it’s strange when all of my students are little thumbnails and I have to scroll to see everyone’s faces,” Wilton said. 

Students also use Zoom or Facetime to connect with their friends to practice social distancing, but what they look forward to the most is to see and connect with them in real life. 

“I know we’ll appreciate school more because we can hang out with our friends,” Zink said. “Even though Zoom is there, it’s not the same.” 

The PLCS 2020-2021 school year is scheduled to be August 11th, which gives students a little bit of hope things will be back to normal. 

“Students will be glad just to be back and we might see a change in attitude, maybe a change in how we do things,” Wilton said. 

 It is not certain what is going to happen next, but students and staff are staying positive in these uncertain times. 

“There isn’t much that we can really do, so were just going to have to make the most of what we have,” Wilton said. “I also think there are different lessons students are learning like family and ways to spend your time.”