From lockdown to schools classroom

A couple of Boston Spa students have described the impact of Coronavirus on their education.

Monday, 29th June 2020, 2:27 pm

Katie-Mae Wright and Megan Dykes, who are in Year 12 at Elliott Hudson College (Boston Spa Academy sixth form), described the journey from lockdown and being stuck at home to the tentative return to the classroom.

“When on Wednesday 18th March the Prime Minister announced that due to the coronavirus pandemic schools would be closing on the Friday until further notice, we didn’t think nearly four months later life would not yet be back in like normal, wrote the girls for the Wetherby News.

“Lockdown just seemed so surreal. One minute we could go to school and see my friends and family. We could socialise. The next minute we were saying goodbye to our teachers and friends, not knowing when we would see them again, stuck at home communicating with friends and family over FaceTime and learning remotely.”

They added that the continuity of school, and a recent move to Google Classroom online video lessons, has helped with the uncertainty and stress.

And the work of teachers to set work, give feedback and encouragement has been immense.

“Our teachers have made PowerPoints with an audio narration and set quizzes and weekly submission tasks,” they wrote.

“Every other week we’ve also received phone calls from the sixth form team to check that we’re ok. This support has been really reassuring.

The biggest change, however, was returning to lessons on Monday June 15.

“Our usual 20 hour week of lessons is now down to eight but the face-to-face contact has been a major boost.”

But they have been reassured by steps taken to follow regulations.

“Social distancing and handwashing is taken very seriously and has given us the confidence that the school site is a safe environment to go back to.

“There are new sinks and hand sanitizers fitted around the site and at the entrance and social distancing signs are everywhere.

“In our classrooms our desks are now two meters apart which is so strange, but it’s such a relief being back in lessons with our teachers.

“One of the main positives is that we have been able to identify strengths and weaknesses in working independently.

“We’ve also realised how much we actually miss school, friends and family.”

They added that it was much easier to learn in the classroom with a teacher and friends.

“Embracing the challenges of lockdown has been demanding and taken resilience, with time management playing a key role in both staying healthy and studying productively.

“We hope that in the coming months we will be able to return to school life full time but until then we will stay committed to our learning in order to achieve future success.”