Hollywood Hills Elementary (HHE) School students have continued with in-person and virtual learning as the new year began.
In school, students and staff must be socially distanced and wear masks all day in order to prevent infection. Most people do not want to get infected, so HHE put safety measures in place to make everyone feel more comfortable.
“In the beginning, when the teachers came back in October, I was definitely more concerned,” second grade teacher Mrs. Duran said. “But once I came back and saw it myself and saw the … masks, the hand sanitizing, the hand washing, the six feet, then I felt more comfortable.”
Many students and staff members are happy to be back in-person because communication was hard in virtual school.
“In the beginning, when the teachers came back in October, I was definitely more concerned. But once I came back and saw it myself and saw the … masks, the hand sanitizing, the hand washing, the six feet, then I felt more comfortable.”Mrs. Duran, second grade teacher
“We used to call meetings and everyone would be gathered together in the media center or in a conference room or in a classroom, and that’s no longer,” Assistant Principal Rivera said. “Now, we talk on the phone. There’s a lot of messaging and emailing and video conferencing that never happened before, and I had to learn how to use video conferencing, which I didn’t use before the pandemic.”
Students doing virtual learning are attending class on Microsoft Teams with different teachers. Even with different teachers, students have mixed feelings about learning virtually.
“[I prefer learning] in school,” fifth grade student Sebastian Durand said. “I like the fact that [online school] still works and that we are able to share our screen and all that.”
“[I prefer learning] in school. I like the fact that [online school] still works and that we are able to share our screen and all that.”Sebastian Durand, fifth grade student
Some students returned to school for the first time at the beginning of the third quarter. These students are able to compare their virtual experience to their new online one.
“I like to learn in school,” fourth grade student Blake Gabriel said. “[I liked online school] because sometimes I didn’t have to really turn my camera on. [I didn’t like] that I don’t get to see the teacher in person.”
HHE staff members are still happy, even though only half the student population is back in-person.
“Now that we are having most of the kids back to school, or at least half the kids at school, it’s a happy medium,” Rivera said.