Challenges of Distance Learning

Nathan Lee, Lead Editor

Approximately a month and a half into the school year, many students have realized that distance learning is not what they expected. When students and parents first got the email that the LCPS School Board elected to remain 100 percent distance for the beginning of the school year, many couldn’t imagine staying on a computer for 7-10 hours a day, but now that is essentially the norm for many secondary students.

Distance learning has presented immense challenges for many. Some challenges that have been frequently mentioned are equality, mental health, and an immense amount of workload.  According to a petition on called “Reduce the Workload for LOCO Students”, one student said that before online school that they would usually earn A’s or B’s, but now they are consistently earning C’s because the workload is just too much. Some frequent comments in this petition were that students are spending more time than ever on school but the results aren’t showing. Many students have also stated that they are constantly getting headaches and feeling anxious because there is just not enough time to learn the material.

Finally, another important issue that has been less frequently discussed is equality. Distance learning is not equitable because the students whose families are financially stable can succeed more easily by hiring tutors tutors to help them.  Also, if a parent has educational experience, they can provide help for their children. However, for those students whose families may not have the time or experience to help or whose families don’t know when their next paycheck is coming, how does the school expect them to be motivated to try? Distance learning is perpetuating the old equality problem where “the rich become richer and the poor poorer.”

With this distance learning model, many teachers have to assign more work since there is less instruction time compared to in-person school. Then teachers have to grade more assignments in a shorter period or time, forcing students to have less time to be able to soak in the material and learn it. When teachers have to rush the material to get through the curriculum, it is not beneficial for students. We go to school to learn and prepare us for our futures, so if we don’t have time to comprehend the material, then what is the benefit of going to school?

So, now you may ask, what can we do about this? Well, there are many things we can do about this. Something you can do is to email the school board and tell them about your family’s situation, but the even better action that you can take is to stay in communication with your teachers and tell them your opinions about the class whether it’s good or bad. If we want change, we have to fight for it. We got this!