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Teacher And Student Thoughts On Hybrid Learning

On the eighth of March, Camas High School will be welcoming all students back for what is known as a hybrid schedule. This topic has been fairly controversial among students and teachers. Everyone has varying opinions about this decision. Teachers and students give their views about this subject and what they like and dislike about it.

Some staff members think that the idea of going back to school is not a good or safe idea.

CHS Honors’ English and Japanese teacher Karen Lovre said, “I feel like we are rushing the return to school in a building with over 2,000 students and staff. The fact that students will intermingle in different groups and classrooms seems risky to me.”

She also shared that because not all of the teachers have a vaccine she felt it was scary to be in contact with students.

Some students have a similar idea about going back to school.

CHS Sophomore Erin Connelly said, “I am excited to meet my teachers and nervous to be back with my peers. Many of them have not taken safety restrictions seriously and it does concern me that I might be putting myself at risk. It depends on the group of kids I end up with. Maybe it will be better than I expect.”

Other staff members think that the move into a hybrid learning style is a good idea.

CHS Choir teacher Ethan Chessin said, “First, I think there is a lot of good data now that support the idea that schools are not drivers of infection when proper countermeasures are in place.  Second, I know how important social connection is for mental health for ALL of us – but especially for teenagers.  I have always believed strongly in the capability of teenagers to rise to a challenge and I believe CHS students are capable of responsibly holding their end of the bargain to make school safe and reap the benefits.”

Chessin also thinks that the options given were great because they gave everyone an option no matter what their comfort level is.

Some of the teachers are preparing for kids to be entering school so that both the students and themselves will stay safe.

Lovre said, “Well, we will be keeping track of where everyone sits and limit moving around.  I will be cleaning desks and chairs a lot.  We are all not used to wearing masks for long periods of time, so I think that will be difficult at first.”

Along with teachers, students are preparing mentally and physically. One student, Dorthy Franklin shares her perspective on returning to school.

Franklin said, “I’m a bit nervous to return, even though cases are going down. I’m mostly worried that other students aren’t going to take it seriously enough. Otherwise, I’m pretty neutral on it.”

The staff of CHS ensures that they will do their best to keep up with proper COVID safety precautions. Being in a school environment is a risk but with the help of students, they plan to make it as safe as it can be considering the pandemic. Many students and teachers are worried about their health but are also excited to be returning to school and for some, meeting their teachers for the first time.

CHS Sophomore Aliyah Brown said,  “I’m excited for us to try and go back to normal. I think a lot of us are happy to be going back.”

The transition seems sudden and comes with a lot of potential risks but not all students and teachers see it this way.

English teacher Mr. Farland said, “I think the biggest thing I’m trying to wrap my head around is how best to work with students who are in our classroom, students who are in our class but not in the classroom that day, and students who are in our class but continuing remotely. We’re all going to have to allow ourselves some grace as we figure this out.”

Many residents of Camas are remaining hopeful and positive in regards to the return of students. It is extremely difficult to know what the outcome will be, but the transition back to what used to be a “normal” school routine will begin on the designated date, March 1st.

Camasonian journalists Garrett Monroe and Shae Lavoie contributed to this article.

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