Illustration by Kelly Ma

Teachers deserve praise for resilience in pandemic

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School closure forced educators to leave their classrooms and recreate learning environments online. Because distance learning introduced many complications that diminished the quality of students’ school experience, students questioned the efforts made by teachers. However, teachers exceptionally adapted to these new circumstances, ensuring that students received sufficient support.

One of the most prominent issues with remote learning is the absence of the classroom. Because traditional methods of teaching did not transfer over to distance learning, teachers acclimated themselves and their lesson plans to the online environment. Although there were initially no established class schedules or meeting platforms, teachers eventually devised new methods for how students attend class and submit assignments. Setting a standard for how class should operate is essential, as it offers stability and familiarity with a foreign education system. By better coordinating classes, teachers are avoiding the fallout from last year that resulted in a lack of participation and unwillingness to learn.

Not only were teachers tasked with revamping their lesson plans and schedules, but they also had to act as sources of emotional support. Throughout the year, teachers have conducted multiple surveys to better understand where students are at mentally and academically. In consideration of those factors, they have alleviated grade concerns by offering students more flexibility with their work. No matter their circumstances, leniency allows students to have the opportunity to continue pursuing an education without the fear of receiving a lowered grade. 

Admittedly, students are not receiving the same quality education as they would under normal conditions, impacting their academic capabilities in the future. In spite of that, it is essential to keep in mind that teachers should not solely bear responsibility for providing an education. Students are expected to put in a certain amount of effort into their own studies. Under distance learning, where teachers have less control over what their class is doing, it is paramount that students understand the importance of self-discipline and motivation. When no one is there to supervise students, they must maintain their resolve and perseverance, which proves necessary to success during in-person learning. This holds true especially for students when they enter college or the workforce. 

Without much time for preparation, teachers dealt with one of the most significant and sudden changes to professions. They have done a remarkable job of fulfilling their duties as educators. The pandemic has weighed down an entire generation of students, and teachers are one of the most influential figures that can affect what students take out of this experience. 

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