Egad! Another E-Learning Day?


Joclynn Cochran, Staff Writer

COVID-19 may be something students can someday put behind them–but it looks like E-Learning is here to stay.

E-Learning rose in popularity as a way to continue teaching students while also protecting their health during the pandemic. Now, this online way of instruction is being used to cover a variety of situations, such as weather-related issues, power outages, and even scheduled teacher meetings. Such was the case this past week, when it was used to provide teachers with professional development time. On Oct. 19, it will be utilized again during Parent-Teacher Conferences.

As convenient as it may be, there are still mixed reactions on how effective E-Learning actually is. At home, for instance, there are many distractions. Some students find it more challenging than others to focus and stay concentrated. Kendall Gibbs, a sophomore, says, “I do not like E-Learning; it’s difficult to learn while you are not in a classroom setting.” Tristan Bryson, another sophomore, agrees. “I am more of a hands-on  learner. I’d rather work in a classroom with teachers than at home…alone.”

Others, like sophomore Korbin Hershberger, note that some classes are nearly impossible to do at home. He cites gym and choir as two prime examples. “It really takes away from getting the full experience of the classes–and it’s not as enjoyable.”

Then, there are those who could take it or leave it. Sophomore Bianca Hilton is one of them. “It can be good in some instances, as we don’t have to make up any extra school days, but the way we experienced it [during the pandemic] as a whole took a toll on everyone.” Hilton adds on, noting how E-Learning has “troubled” most people, including herself.

Destinee Middleton, also a sophomore, has issues with the whole technological element of it. “I have mixed emotions on E-Learning, I’d  rather do work on paper rather than electronically on my iPad.” Middleton talks about how working on her iPad is harder for her but supplemented her thoughts, adding, “I do love spending days at home!”

On the other end of the spectrum, there are those who look forward to learning from home. Angelica Sanchez, a junior, shares her sentiments. “I love E-Learning days! I get to sleep in and take breaks whenever I’d like to. It’s very refreshing!” Despite enjoying the day off from school, Sanchez finds connecting with friends on those days difficult.

Academically, though, most agree that little happens on E-Learning days. Jaiden Bestman, a sophomore, expresses it this way: “In my personal opinion, I believe that E-Learning is useless and a waste of time.” Leah Cochran, a sophomore, shares Bestman’s opinion. “I really don’t like E-Learning at all. I find it more challenging than regular days at school. ”

As challenging as it can be for students, it can create complications for teachers, as well. Social Studies teacher Mr. Michael Pawlak sees E-Learning as a double-edged sword. “I get that it’s necessary, but it leads to confusion on both ends.” He continues to add the fact that he can keep more students’ attention in his classroom, which will support more students in being successful. Mr. Thomas Dosman, a Business teacher,  brings up how students are less likely to reach out for help on those days. He says, “It’s hard for me to notice when my students need help if they don’t ask, so if I cannot tell in the classroom, I definitely cannot tell through a screen!”

While also understanding the necessity for it, teacher Juan Davila sums it up best:  “I do not like E-Learning because it’s harder for people to function the same as they would in a classroom.” Out of all this, one point shines forth: Virtual learning cannot replace the real thing–with real people in a real building.