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Return students safely

To the editor:

In a recent article from the Suffolk News-Herald, there is a topic regarding students going back to in-class sessions versus online learning. In this article, it specifically states that “Superintendent Dr. John B. Gordon told members not to expect anything about reopening schools again until its January meeting.” This article goes through how some students are staying online, but this isn’t the right decision.

I know that schools are trying to be careful because COVID is going around, but I don’t think they should be depriving students of genuine education. Online learning is nowhere near as effective as in-person learning is. Online learning is a set up for many distractions and doesn’t allow the students to get the one-on-one help that they need. In-person learning allows students to be able to easily access the teacher when help is needed. It also gives the students a social life, rather than being cooped up inside of the house all day with no other peers. Yes, students may have siblings, but it’s not the same as having a social life. Personally, I know the effects of this because I am learning virtually. With me being in college, it’s a little bit different, but the effects are the same. While learning virtually, I am taking BIO 142 (Anatomy & Physiology 2) which is a lab-focused class. This class is extremely hard because I feel like I would learn the material better if I was in a class setting doing hands-on.

As I said, COVID is going around, but there are things that can be done to allow students to safely go back to school. These things include sanitizing highly touched areas like desks, having the students and teachers wear masks, making sure children and teachers have easy access to hand sanitizer and making sure that the desks are apart. It’s time to gain back genuine education. To do this, we must all come together to understand the effects virtual learning has on students.

Katelyn N. Riddick

Suffolk