Losing a Year of Learning

“Many students have lost a year of education, a year of learning, a year of socializing, a year of friendships, and a year of memories; all of which can’t be made back.”

It’s the start of a new school year. You see old friends, soon-to-be friends, meet new teachers, and everything seems like it’s going to be an exciting school year; or at least, that’s how a normal year would go…

For students in 2020-2021, the beginning of the school year was quite the opposite with classes being online due to COVID-19. Throughout the state of Texas, schools began virtual learning last spring due to the pandemic. Unfortunately, virtual learning has its drawbacks with some students feeling like education has meant nothing this school year. 

Following the ending of spring break, the week back marks a full year of online learning; an entire year of some students not being able to interact with friends or teachers in school. Furthermore, making this entire virtual learning feel disengaging compared to past years. Worst of all, many students feel as if their learning has been hindered due to online learning.

Although learning online has its merits, like working at your own pace and being on your own time, we can’t ignore the overwhelming drawbacks as well which include the overall mental health of students this year, students not being motivated, and the dramatically low pass rates this year. All of which may be causing a hindrance in some students’ education.

As much as we can try to help students’ mental health this year, it is clear that there’s simply too much going on with the pandemic. How is a student expected to work when a relative may be sick or their family is financially suffering? It’s simply too taxing on a teenager’s mind. 

Not to mention, not many students have a way of releasing all the stress and anxiety built up from the work they’re given. In the past, students could release all this energy by interacting with friends, unfortunately, students haven’t been able to have that luxury this school year.

In addition to this, several students used in-person schooling as a way to be themselves among friends. When students don’t have this time to be themselves, how will they be able to figure out who they are as a person and what they want to do in life? 

High school students shouldn’t have to worry about how they could help their family with rent, and working full-time jobs. A high school student’s main concerns should be their grades and family and the fun things about high school. But unfortunately, due to COVID-19, some students have to delay their education.

Alongside the poor mental health of students is stress and anxiety, all of which makes the motivation to learn feel hopeless. Additionally, there’s no escaping work, your entire life you work whether that be a job or at school. However, once you get done working, there’s usually a home where you can go to relax and get your mind off of work. But once you bring the work home, that’s when motivation starts to decline.

Students are expected to work in an environment where they’re used to being relaxed and at ease, lowering productivity and in turn producing poor quality work. This is unfortunately teaching students how to behave in the coming years after high school, in the workplace, or in college – all of which will not tolerate lackluster work.

Keeping all of this in mind, it is clear how and what is causing the low pass rates this year. Unfortunately, the low grades are worsening the mentality of students, many of whom are simply giving up because they’re too far behind or just not learning as easily as they would be in the classroom. There’s too much for a student in a pandemic to worry about that sadly, education is no longer coming first for many students.

While some students’ education is being hindered due to online learning, another group of students are actually prospering from online learning. Although students during online schooling work at their own pace, not every student is the same. Many upperclassmen work full-time jobs making school that much harder for them. Not to mention, many other students that are hindered by online learning may have a plethora of problems going on that only interacting with friends could cure, which is currently limited during a pandemic.

Although the idea of online learning may have been a joy at first sight, it has shown that a year of online learning was followed by poor mental health, low motivation, dramatically low grades, and countless other issues. Sadly, this may leave students with the thought that education is nothing but stress and anxiety. 

Many students have lost a year of education, a year of learning, a year of socializing, a year of friendships, and a year of memories; all of which can’t be made back.

As the saying goes, “Practice makes perfect.” These are the words every student has heard once before. But when the environment of “Practice” is misplaced, it will inevitably delay the “Perfection” that every student strives so desperately to achieve. 


If there are issues with this article, report it here.