Even though online or virtual learning has been necessary for education during the COVID-19 pandemic, will there be long term effects on students, teachers and administrators? No one knows the long term effects of distance learning, but later it may become obvious that some effects can be both good and bad.
“The experiences we have shape who we are. What kind of impact Virtual Learning will have on us long term is difficult to tell. No doubt we will all be more thankful for the little things once we get to be back at school together,” Principal Kim Ball said.
Switching to all online school is completely different than attending school in person. Some students just don’t have the motivation or support system to succeed in their classes. While teachers are trying their best, some students just can’t stay engaged with the 90 minute class periods.
“The main difficulty for me is not having as much immediate student feedback to work with. It feels very one-sided at times. I try to move between subjects when possible and not spend too much time on a given subject,” teacher Rob McGlothin said.
While many things about virtual learning are awful, there are some great things that have come out of it. Teachers have the training and resources needed to do full online classes. Curriculum has been updated to fit the technology.
“Teachers have had significant training in the use of technology in the classroom. Whether we are in Distance Learning or Hybrid Learning, they will use those skills to improve education for students. Students are having to learn in different ways. Hopefully students will know themselves even better and be able to use that knowledge to improve outcomes for themselves,” Ball said.
Since we have started distance learning there have been many positive things to come out of it. It is sometimes hard to see that when all people can focus on is the negative. Students are having to learn in new and different ways, which improves problem solving skills and overall learning. They are having to learn to work independently. There has also been a great reduction of paper consumption.
Since virtual learning has started many students, teachers, administrators, and parents have been affected. We still have no idea the long term effects this could cause on our society, or how long we will stay in distance learning format.