BPHS should be going back full time

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Chris Erfort

Students walk through the main doors of school on the first day of hybrid learning.

On Oct. 27, the school board turned down the plan to go back full time for the start of the second nine weeks.

While this may be a safe play, and staying COVID-free is a vital part of a student’s health, I believe BPHS should, at the very least, give students the option to go back full time. 

At home, students have everything they need to keep themselves entertained which makes it awfully hard to focus on a small computer screen for several consecutive hours. We have had to do it for almost 18 weeks of school now, and it’s not proving to be any easier than it was the first day.

The average attention span of a teenager is ten to fifteen minutes. In-person, it’s easier to snap out of a daydream and pay attention because there is more to focus on and the atmosphere is more “demanding” than a bedroom where the students have nothing to restrict them from going off task.

Being back in the classroom for only two days of the week has already proven effective for not only students but also faculty. Students are retaining information better than they had in previous weeks, but opening for the whole week would allow students to reach their full learning potentials.

It brings back a feeling of normalcy to see students roaming the halls and to see faculty writing on the whiteboards, but it doesn’t feel right to only be doing it with half-empty classrooms.

Going back full time would only keep this improvement going, and students will finally be able to really learn again.

Should BPHS go back to school full time?

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I think that giving students the opportunity to have a normal school life, amidst all of the “not normal” that is everywhere right now will help to lead them in a positive relationship with school, rather than a negative one. 

Sure, cases are rising, but if a student feels unsafe or uncomfortable in a school environment, they can (and probably should) simply stay home, as they normally would.

Regardless of whether we stay hybrid or not, the cases will keep coming, it’s practically inevitable. Following through with the original plan to return full time is something that should not have been turned down, as it would have opened up the possibility that the world of education in Bethel Park can recover from this crisis.

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