Students adapt to new norms

Students+wear+masks+during+Algebra+I.

Ashton Deweese

Students wear masks during Algebra I.

Ashton Deweese

STARKVILLE, Miss., September 21—The 2020-21 school year started off unlike any other. After the previous semester was cut short and students spent months at home, the school year has finally started back. Not only have students faced the effects of Covid-19 over the past several months, but they have also had to deal with the changes in school.

Students of Starkville High returned to school August 24, required to wear masks and faced other unexpected changes due to Covid-19. They were allowed to choose whether they wanted to continue school traditionally, hybrid or completely online.

Virtual learning is a new adjustment for the school district, but it involves technology like Canvas and Zoom. It is a new norm for all students, even if they are in traditional school. Canvas is a website where students can communicate with teachers, complete assignments and view their grades.

Lily Schauwecker is junior and a virtual student for Starkville High. “I have used canvas before so I wouldn’t say the adjustment was too difficult,” Schauwecker said.

Over the months of the Covid-19 pandemic, students and teachers found ways to communicate and learn without being at school. Zoom is also a way for students to connect with teachers when they are not face to face in the classroom.

Shannon Dewberry chose to spend her senior year as a hybrid student at Starkville High since the outbreak of Covid-19. “I like Zoom because I can actually hear my teachers talk about the information which is helpful, but it’s not the same as learning in the classroom because I like to see a visual of the material being taught, and it can be difficult to do that on Zoom,” Dewberry said.

Although they complete assignments on their own compared to traditional students, virtual students are not completely on their own; the school district is providing free Wi-Fi hot spots within the community to ensure that students are able to complete assignments. The school district also provides links labeled “Canvas Help” and “Virtual Learning Guide.”

Whether students are in person or online the school district has continued to make changes to help students feel comfortable while they are learning in this new environment caused by Covid-19.