The Rush

Guest writer Michael Hassler reflects on distance learning


Photo provided by the author

Michael Hassler concentrates on an online assignment. Distance learning presents challenges for students and teachers.

I miss the rush of cool air as I enter the front doors. I miss the honor hall and seeing the names of my brothers and sisters. I miss kids saying hello as we change classes or eat lunch together then shoot hoops, or kick a ball together on the field at the end of the day.

There are some good things about comprehensive distance learning (CDL). People are staying healthy and it’s nice to sleep in. Some say it’s easier to concentrate at home and that there isn’t the social pressure. Other students feel more organized and like working at their own pace. 

But many students and families are struggling with CDL. Students are saying their emotional and mental health are suffering. They feel there is more pressure and too much work with little support. Some think it’s hard to stay motivated and are feeling isolated, overwhelmed, and not learning as much.

CDL is different. Teachers and students are trying to make it work. But sitting in front of a screen most of the day is hard. Computers have problems, breakout rooms can be uncomfortable, and assignments come fast. It can be confusing. It can be lonely.

One day I’ll be back hurrying to class before the bell rings. I wonder if I’ll get to feel that cool air my junior year or if I’ll have to wait.