Online vs In Person 2021


As of recently, SJUSD decided to give students a choice between online and in-person schooling starting in the second semester. This means that students can return to campus full time or continue to learn at a distance through their technology. Many students have experienced rough times and hardships with online learning and are eager to head back to school, while others are willing to spend the rest of the year learning from home. 

Online learning requires every student to own some form of technology that allows them to efficiently and successfully complete their schoolwork. This is clearly not good for those who cannot afford the right equipment because it makes the online experience much more difficult and stressful. In-person classes are a financially more efficient choice for lower-income families.

“Before any online program can hope to succeed, it must have students who are able to access the online learning environment. Lack of access, whether it be for economic or logistic reasons, will exclude otherwise eligible students from the course. This is a significant issue in rural and lower socioeconomic neighborhoods,” a writer from the University of Illinois said.

A lack of social interaction is a consequence of online learning. By talking to your teacher or students from behind a screen, you don’t get to physically see them and create those bonds that you normally would in a classroom setting. Many students are unwilling to participate when they can easily turn their camera off and do something else. In-person classes are key for engagement from students and actual learning, instead of just submitting work by 11:59. 

However, introverted students may see online school as their best friend. Avoiding embarrassment and anxiety in the classroom can easily be relieved when speaking over a computer screen. People aren’t physically staring at you, and you can feel a bit more relaxed when answering a question from the teacher.

“Individual learning can be a blessing for students that don’t feel comfortable in classrooms. While social interaction can be key for some, it can be a big burden for introverts. Most of the time, they will feel pressured to interact with other students and teachers, while they would rather study on their own in the comfort of their home,” an unnamed author from the My Computer Career Program said.

In my personal experience, online school is much worse when it comes to motivation and mental health than in-person school. Not being able to see friends on a daily basis really takes a toll on your mood and can make you feel lonely. 

Online school is important for the health and safety of our community and containment of COVID, no matter how many people are eager to get back on campus. Once we have a vaccine and it is safe to return to school without risk, it’s time to get back to real learning and send this online learning back to the lobby.