Parkdale students’ opinions vary on virtual vs. in person learning


By now, it’s been over a month since school started, and things are different from last school year. Virtual learning may have been a different experience for everyone in general. There are things that some people liked about virtual learning more than in-person learning and vice versa. 

A survey of 60 Parkdale students, which focused on how some students felt about coming back into the school building, showed mixed emotions on the return.  Below are some of their responses:

What didn’t work with Virtual Learning?

Sophomore Fabricio Hernandez: “I was unable to socialize, hard to stay motivated, struggled to pay attention in class, etc.” 

Anonymous: “I didn’t like how I couldn’t really ask the teacher questions because I would have to email them and sometimes they would never get back to me or they would respond to me in two days’ time. I also couldn’t learn math or science over the computer and reading boring stories online just made things 10 times worse than in person.” 

Anonymous: “It’s hard to stay motivated with virtual learning because you’re doing everything from home. Sometimes even from bed, if you have no one to hold you accountable. It feels like it’s optional to go to class even though attendance is very important in school. I also didn’t like having to join Zoom in general. I’d rather be given the work and have the option to join Zoom to ask my teachers questions if needed instead of it being mandatory.”

The difficulties of being back in the building

The survey asked students if they think it is easier to be back in the building, academics-wise. The results were that 91.7 percent of the students voted said yes, it is easier to learn in the building while 8.3 percent said no.

Sophomore, Leslie Sorto, who said yes: ”I feel like it’s a personal thing because last year I was on my A game until the last quarter. I tried my best and did everything I had to do. But now being in school feels so different and I don’t have much motivation.” 

Anonymous, who said yes: “I didn’t do well last year in virtual because it was harder to learn.”

Anonymous, who said yes: “To be honest, it was because there was no middle option and I leaned toward yes a little bit. Solely because of the wifi constraints prevents distraction, which is good.”

Freshman, Alex Lopez, who said yes: “I chose yes because at home I would often get distracted. In addition, being at home made me feel extra lazy.” 

Virtual learning vs. in person learning

The survey also asked students what are some things that they like more about virtual learning than in-person learning. The results were that 85 percent of students said that they like getting comfortable during class, 50 percent said that they like being able to submit late work and get full credit for it, 76.7 percent said that they like eating during class and 50 percent said that they like not being around others which may possibly increase chance of getting COVID.

Sophomore, Angelo Djapa: “[I can] use the bathroom when I want, sleep when I want, do whatever I want.”

Anonymous: “You get to sleep in longer.”

Anonymous: “Less distractions from friends in class.”

Although results showed how much students enjoyed virtual learning, many also made note that in-person has its benefits, too. The results were that 78.3 percent said that they like being with friends, 65 percent said that they like being able to see other people in general, 70 percent said that they like being able to talk to teachers while being in the same room and 58.3 percent said that they like being able to talk with classmates.

What’s the best option?

The survey concluded that 76.7 percent of the surveyed students think that in-person learning is the best option right now, while 23.3 percent said no.

Anonymous: “It’s definitely not the best option to be back in the building, no matter how hard Dr.Goldson, or whoever came up with the idea to move back in the building tries to. People are already catching COVID and students who were in classes of people who catch COVID have to stay home for 10 days, which seems great, but it becomes much more difficult to complete work.” 

Fabricio Hernandez: “Being back in the building is enough for me to feel motivated to do schoolwork again. As without it, I’m unsure if I would even be able to give myself the strength to show up to class anymore.”

Leslie Sorto: “It’s a normal part of life that has been going on for decades. It doesn’t feel the same “high school” experience when you’re just at home. I missed my freshman year and I’ll never get it back, which sucks because I’ve heard so many stories of how many life time memories are made as a freshie.”

Anonymous: “While I prefer in person learning, I think it would be best for everyone’s safety if we were to stay home. The CDC guidelines are being followed, but very loosely. Virtual learning was terrible, but it would also be terrible for someone to get hurt.”