What do MECHS students think about remote learning?

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SPRUCE PINE – Adult members of the workforce are not the only people who have had to adapt to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, students have had to adjust to learning remotely from home instead of in a classroom setting.

“Remote learning has been challenging,” said Stacie Burleson, principal at Mayland Early College High School. “I believe educators pursue the career because of a love of the interaction with students.” 

Mayland Early College High School teachers currently video conference with their classes at least twice each week and communicate via email or phone daily, Burleson said. 

“We are committed to offering the highest quality instruction possible, but it is a truly sad time,” she said. “We miss our students. We miss each other. Our school members are like an extended family, and social interaction is a huge part of education.” 

Burleson commended the teachers at MECHS for their long hours and diligence in finding alternative teaching methods. 

“I sincerely appreciate the support we have received from the parents and the community,” she said. “But most importantly, I thank our students for continuing to work hard and persevere through technological and social challenges.”

Mayland Early College High School students give their thoughts after the first week of remote learning: 

Freshman Valerie Buchanan: “This past week has been OK, I am learning now to go on in life and try to live it to the fullest, and use this time to spend with my siblings and parents. But as in school, I’ve noticed it helps when I plan out my day and what I am going to work on for that day. The most positive experience that has come out of the quarantine so far has been just getting to spend more time with my sister. This whole experience has made me appreciate school more because I have realized without having school and doing it from home, I would have nothing to look forward to, as in seeing my friends, and just getting out of the house.”

Freshman Rachel Thacker: “I’ve been getting used to the work and when it’s all due, and I’m feeling better about all this. I made a new friend, and she’s amazing. We stayed up talking for hours, but we didn’t talk at school, but because of this, it has made me talk to more people.”

Sophomore Ansley Caterson: “My week has been great. I’m adjusting quite nicely to the online format of everything and, in some ways, prefer it. Honestly, the most positive experience has been that I can do my work on my own time. I’m also an introvert, so staying inside is good for me.”

Sophomore Cole Holden: “I had a great week. I am starting to adjust more and more as we go. Being able to use the extra time I have to work on myself physically by exercising has been a positive experience. I really love how the biology assignments are laid throughout the week. This gives me the motivation to complete the assignments because they are not due on the same day. I also love how Ms. Winters has a calendar of the week’s assignments. This helps me to stay on track with what is due.”

Freshman Zuha Naveed: “My week has been pretty boring. I’ve just been doing all the homework and trying to manage it evenly throughout the week. I’m getting more used to everything being online now.”

Sophomore Tristen Throckmorton: “This week has been slow, but I’m adjusting well. YouTube has been unreliable, and I get to eat whenever I want.”

Freshman Dakota Lewis: “My week has been pretty good. I am struggling a little just because it’s so different. Ms. Greiner shows her positivity, and it carries out to me, and she has an amazing attitude toward all this.”

Freshman Shalea Reece: “My week has been good, and I am slowly getting used to being home all the time, though I don’t enjoy it that much. I miss my friends. A positive experience has probably been being able to spend more time with my little brother and sister. I didn’t see them much before the coronavirus.”

Junior Chase Williams: “My week is going well, this online stuff is weird trying to keep up with, but I manage. I’ve been able to spend more time with my family, and that’s the most positive thing I could have to happen.”

Freshman Miguel Benites: “I turned in all the work before it was due. I’ve adjusted to this way of doing school work pretty well, I think. The teacher meetings are useful to ask questions about things we may not know. I think the school staff is helping enough for my situation.”

Junior Autumn Bowlin: “I have been adjusting well, but it’s a little complicated for me to do my work because I don’t have wifi, and I’ve been using my hotspot. Honestly, I prefer going to school and actually seeing my friends and seeing my teachers. It’s more stressful keeping up with all my classes online because sometimes I forget to check. I’m also very extroverted, and I hate staying at home 24/7. I like seeing my friends and being able to go places with my mom, so I don’t really like quarantine. But one positive is I get to sleep late.” 

Sophomore Hannah Moore (speaking about biology): “I love the organization of how the work and due dates are displayed. I also love how everything on Powerschool is in order of when the due date is, and each assignment going down the page also has the due date written on it. There is really no guessing when something is due, and that keeps my stress level down for biology class.”