First Week of Virtual Learning

An empty 8000 hallway as students are at home during the pandemic

An empty 8000 hallway as students are at home during the pandemic

Azwad Ahmed, Editor

August 31st marked the first day back to school for Palm Beach County. Due to COVID-19, this year was a very different year for students, teachers, and staff.  All classes have started virtually , with teachers using Google Meet to teach their students. Students now have to follow the strict guideline of “camera on, microphones off.” Teachers may also enforce using Google extensions such as “Nod” which allows emoticons to be seen on the Google Meet. Students will now also have to make the decision of staying online or returning back to campus.

On Wednesday of the first week, the Palm Beach School District sent out phone calls to parents informing them to take the survey on whether to stay virtual or return to school. The survey is on the Palm Beach School District website.  The Palm Beach School District has also recently released a video informing the public on what precautions are being taken to ensure a safe learning environment. Face masks being mandatory for all on-campus, social distancing, and frequent hand-washing are some of the mandates set in place by the District. More information could be found on the School District website. 

As with any school year, the first week of any school year does not always go without some complications. In the past, students may have been late trying to find their classes, show up to the wrong lunch, or were placed in the wrong class, all of which can make any student livid and rush to their guidance counselor.  This school year is no different. Technology and Wi-Fi issues are sure to arise during Virtual Learning. Google Meets freeze, Wi-Fi may be slow, or power may be lost. Many teachers and students have been kicked off their Google Meet, making for quite an interesting classroom recording. 

One such teacher who is determined to bring an exceptional experience to online learning, is AP Biology and AICE Thinking Skills teacher Mrs.Fullington. Fullington, who is a trailblazer teacher,  (a teacher who has adopted the use of technology in the classroom early through special training) has been training teachers in using technology to instruct students online.

“There have been some small hiccups, but that’s to be expected, as we learn how to adapt our teaching styles to an online setting. Students have been very respectful,  engaged, and seemingly excited to be back in school,” says Fullington.

Fullington also shared her favorite part of online learning as “seeing students participate in learning again. It’s always a special moment as a teacher, to see students make connections.”

By Friday, the School District announced students and teachers will be returning to campus by Monday, September 21st.

An empty science classroom as students are at home during the pandemic.