There’s been some recent progress in the COVID-19 vaccine. So there’s also been growing hope in things getting back to normal. This includes the education of our children. It’s only a matter of time until students and teachers are using classroom furniture and facilities again. All of these things enhance the teaching and learning experience.
But we know that not everything will go back to how it was before. The COVID-19 pandemic changed many things in the long run. Perhaps, these changes may even be permanent. In education, these are the possible changes that the pandemic may have caused.
The Prevailing Digital Movement
Schools have shifted to remote learning. This is due to the quarantine restrictions and social distancing that were put in place. They’ve grown heavily reliant on the Internet and digital resources.
Instead of using the chalkboard or whiteboard, teachers and students used the Google Jamboard to scribble their notes. Students used their iPads and Apple Pencils to compute math problems during graded recitations.
Instead of handing out printed copies of their essays and other written assignments, students submitted via email. Teachers also got the hang of checking and making annotations on their papers in a digital manner.
These are just some of the many examples of how schools have utilized technology for remote learning. Even if they all go back to the classroom after the pandemic has passed, there’s a huge possibility that they’d still be reliant on technology.
Many Students Not Returning to School
Remote learning has forced many households across the world to shift to become a proper venue for homeschooling. Many parents struggled with helping their children keep up with their studies. Thus, they’re looking forward to their children going back to school. But many other parents have embraced their newfound role as teachers. Because of this, many of them are more inclined to retain the homeschooling setup. As such, their children may not need to return to school anymore.
However, it’s a different matter for teens and other young adults. They may choose not to return to school as well but for a different reason. Many of their parents have lost their jobs during the pandemic. This urged young adults to step up and help with the household expenses. Many of them, especially from low-income communities, struggled with remote learning anyway. They didn’t have a stable internet connection and proper computers. So they opted to apply for jobs instead. Because of this, probably, they may never go back to school anymore.
Unfair Discrepancies Between Students During Standardized Exams
There are standardized exams for students at the same level all over the world. Of course, the most popular is the Scholastic Assessment Test or more commonly known as the SAT. High school juniors usually take this test during their spring semester. But some students take it earlier or later. The SAT has a major impact on students’ academic standing and college applications. Most, if not all, colleges and universities take the results of this exam very seriously.
But remote learning has changed how students would prepare for such an exam. There’s been the recent popularity of more competency-based learning. It’s when students learn what they can at their own pace. It’s ideal during a pandemic where the circumstances vary on each household–thus, having a major effect on a student’s education.
But this learning style would mean that some students would be disadvantaged during standardized tests such as the SATs. Those fortunate with digital learning tools and private tutors would have the most advantage. As such, students from low-income communities would fall behind.
Many of us parents have been worrying about our children’s education ever since the pandemic started. They’ve been struggling with getting the hang of digital learning. We know that they’re missing the constant and reassuring guidance of their teachers. We fear that they’ve been falling behind on their studies.
With the looming effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on our children’s education, we must be more mindful of their education and help them get back on track.