From School to Home

Why I Decided To Do Virtual Learning


Photo by Rachana Kommineni

Google classroom has been a very helpful tool during online schooling. It helps me keep track of my work, helps me to be organized and is easier to see the due dates for all of my assignments.

Rachana Kommineni, Reporter

In early March, I was just browsing through my mail when I came across an interesting article about a “novel virus.” Intrigued, I scrolled through the article eager to know more about this “novel virus” — the coronavirus. Each day, I watched the numbers steadily climb across both Austin and the country, as more Americans became stricken by this mysterious illness. Despite the rising death toll, many people refused to take one simple preventative measure to protect themselves and others from the virus — wearing a mask. A couple days later, Principal John Sloan emailed everyone that we would be doing virtual learning, as to lessen the chance of catching COVID-19. 

The pandemic presented me with the opportunity to do virtual learning for the first time. At first, I was a bit wary of virtual learning due to concerns surrounding technology issues and limited access to teachers; however, the more I pursued online learning, I realized that they weren’t big issues after all. Although the coronavirus caused a lot of negative mishaps, virtual learning was good for me because I had more time to do my work, I had less chance of catching COVID, and I had significantly fewer technical issues. 

Due to classes being online, I found it easier to do my work because I had greater control of the time I allotted to different activities. For example, during flex time at school, I am limited to only my phone and laptop. As such, I don’t always use this flex time productively, since I get sucked into scrolling through my social media feeds or watching Netflix on my laptop. With online learning, I have a greater say in the ways I want to structure my time. Now, during my flex period at home, I am much more productive, as I use this time to work on a variety of different tasks, ranging from organizing my room to practicing dance. At school, however, students are only limited to their laptops and whatever they decide to bring, like a book. 

Online learning minimizes the chance of catching COVID because if students go to school, they are in contact with more people than they would be at home. According to Fox 7 News, COVID cases have jumped from a dozen to a million in Texas alone. LISD has had around 300 COVID cases since schools reopened until now. To enforce Covid-19 safety precautions, CPHS mandates faculty and students to wear a mask at all times, to sanitize frequently while in the building, and requires students to sit a couple of desks away from each other to maintain social distancing. Despite these safety measures, COVID has still been hitting hard on students. Due to the rising numbers of COVID cases in schools, especially in my district, I decided to stay virtual to minimize my possible exposure to COVID-19. 

When I am virtual, I am free to talk on the phone with friends and family, without worrying that someone might hear me and be able to keep in touch with them. I am also able to have a stress-free environment, without being tempted to chit-chat with my friends. Through virtual learning, I have more access to resources and my parents, as to school where I just have my teachers and classmates. 

Overall, virtual learning has helped me improve more as a student than when school was actually in person. It has also exposed me to how careful everyone needs to beco because no matter how safe people might think they are, they are never 100% sure.