It was a tough decision to make.
When it came time for OVS to return to in-person classes, Sophomore Sarita (Sarah) Guede Hallock was faced with the tough choice to either stay virtual or return back to in-person classes.
In the end, she decided (due to underlying health conditions and living with high-risk family members) to continue the semester virtually.
“I’m planning on going back in January,” Sarita said. “It could end up being sooner than that if there are new scientific developments battling COVID.”
Sarita is one of many students who chose to finish the first semester virtually. At the moment, twenty-six percent of students at the Upper Campus are doing classes online.
With some students in class as well as on the computer screen, the teachers had to come up with a solution to be able to accommodate both at the same time. Each classroom is equipped with a camera showing the board so teachers can communicate with the online students as well as the in-person students.
Both students and teachers had to find ways to navigate to this new way of online learning. At times it is difficult, but the OVS community is staying strong and positive. “I have been impressed by teachers’ patience,” Senior Chloe Warren stated.
While there are obstacles surrounding distance learning, some students are taking advantage of the platform and enjoying the increased flexibility of working from home.
“Online learning is working out very well for me because it allows me to do the sports I love more,” said Freshman Morgan Ellis. “ Even though it’s hard, it’s very manageable.”
Just like students, some teachers are operating from home as well. Upper Campus teacher, Ms. Wachter was teaching her classes remotely from home. After being exposed to her mother who has COVID-19, she was forced to quarantine and therefore teach all her classes online.
“I’ve been trying to actually teach how I normally do,” Ms. Wachter stated. “They are responding and working hard even though I am on a computer screen and not physically there.”
The students that are in-person have a teacher in the classroom that watches them. “I also have to rely on other teachers to help me, which I don’t like. I don’t like adding more work to anyone’s plate,” Ms. Wachter explained.
Luckily, she is now back on campus teaching her classes in-person after she finished the two week quarantine period.
While some teachers and students adapted quite quickly, transitioning from online for several months to in-person is a big change for many and a hard obstacle to overcome, but despite the difficulties, teachers are very happy to be back. Mrs. Wilson has been at OVS for 36 years, and this is the first time anything like it has happened to her, and she is grateful to be back. “My favorite thing is being back on the campus that I have grown to love over the last 36 years,” she said. “Sitting in front of a computer all day was hard on my back and my eyes. I think I am too old and feeble for all day in one place.”
OVS has been in-session with in-person classes for three weeks now, and while everyone is transitioning into the in-person classes, teachers are finding new and effective ways to teach both in-person and online simultaneously.
Many online students are hoping to be able to come back to school for the second semester to continue their high school experience as they used to.
In the meantime, the current students and staff in-person are enjoying being back at the upper campus.
“I am enjoying seeing the staff and students,” Mrs. Wilson said. “They are all good friends.”Share