Many new changes and protocols have been put into place due to the recent outbreak of COVID-19. This includes the shutdown of non-essential businesses, parks and schools. Additionally, many towns have issued a shelter-in-place order. Along with these changes, students have shifted towards online learning, allowing them to move onto the next grade level without in-school learning for part of the last semester this school year.
Students are learning through many different platforms, including Zoom, an online video app that allows students and teachers to video chat to learn new lessons. While some teachers are using Zoom to teach their students, others are creating pre-recorded lectures for students to listen to in order to help progress in the course and complete assignments..
Along with the use of video media, teachers at MSD are using the program called Canvas, a learning platform in which most assignments are found, to set up modules and outline a student’s schedule for the week along with assignments that are explained step by step. These assignments keep students actively involved and learning throughout the week, whether it is through videos, worksheets or notes. Students are not only given resources from their school, but also the state.
“Florida virtual school has also made 100 courses available for free for all schools and is allowing school districts to connect for free to the FLVS learning management system,” said DeSantis in an interview with Scott Sutton and Matt Papaycik from WPTV.
Students are receiving an immensely large amount of help and support from not only teachers, but also their parents during online schooling. This provides students with the same amount of knowledge they would be receiving at school, but now they are just broadening their resources and learning in different ways, which can be extremely helpful to many. Sometimes students get unmotivated at school because it is the same process over and over again, but at home these new ways of learning keep students motivated to finish their year out strong.
Due to schools being closed, students no longer have to take standardized tests including the FSA and various EOCs, all of which play a large factor in various classes. Many of these tests count for 30% of the total class grade, or are a graduation requirement, such as the 10th grade reading and writing FSA.
Even with the cancellations of these tests, students should still be able to move to the next grade level the following year because no test should define everything an individual learns in the school year. Students have completed almost three quarters of their current grade in school and are completing the last quarter online, all of which provide them individual tests to prove their knowledge of the subject.
Schools have begun to come up with solutions for the cancellations, including the class of 2022 having to take their FSA sometime during their junior year, since it is a graduation requirement.
Overall, students should not have to repeat their current grade level because teachers are putting a lot of effort into teaching their students in a new way throughout these hard times and they provide students with everything they need to get a proper education through online learning.