OPINION: A lost year? Instead, focus on what we found

Students have been forced to adapt to an at-home learning environment.

Students have been forced to adapt to an at-home learning environment.

From the very first day of Kindergarten to the moment you walk across the stage to get your diploma at high school graduation, your education helps mold you into the person you will become. Ranging from AP Exams to the SAT’s, every high school opportunity acts as a stepping stone that helps influence educational success. 

This school year has been unprecedented as our world was turned upside down due to COVID-19 restrictions. With a handful of students learning virtually while others attend in person, along with test day confusions and high amounts of screentime, many parents are concerned that their child is not receiving the education they usually would in a normal school year.

Although students have been put at an evident disadvantage, we have conquered the unimaginable. We have learned to adapt to life amidst a global pandemic. Parents are worried about their children not developing the skills necessary to set themselves up for success, but what we are taking away from this experience goes far beyond the information any textbooks could teach us. 

Students have been forced to leave behind the element of consistency within their educational lives and change their expectations of a once routine school schedule to a new, unusual one that is ever changing. The void of personal interaction with the teachers and other students takes a very large toll on the students, but students have discovered ways to see the light in the face of all of this darkness and persevere through various obstacles.

I think that this year has opened our eyes in several ways, and will cause us to appreciate the perks of our previously normal life, as well as embrace the hidden uplifts that come with this drastically different new one. 

From my experience going through this unique year, I have observed that students have learned to deal with being thrown into unfathomably difficult situations. No test or presentation can compare to the skills that we have all developed in pushing through COVID-19, and we will continue to utilize this persistent mentality throughout the rest of our lives. 

These years will be recorded in history books as the time in which our world unexpectedly faced its greatest enemy within the past decades-but what the books may not account for is the resilience and strength that students like me and my peers have had to persist through, but that’s ok. We’ll remember and recount on the days of online school and reflect on how it only made us stronger.  This school year has been anything but lost – I for one feel that it is one that helped us find ourselves.