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One Week Into Online Classes, Parents and Students Call for Academic Freeze

A student shares his experience as a Grade 12 enrollee. 
IMAGE UNSPLASH / Mwesigwa Joel
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Ryle is a grade 12 student in a private school in Pampanga. Every day, he wakes up early to attend his online classes, which start from 7:30 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m. 

“It’s really difficult,” Ryle (not his real name) tells Esquire Philippines

At home, they only have one laptop, which Ryle’s two other siblings also use for their online classes. 

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“I just switch to my mobile phone when my brother’s classes are on,” says Ryle, who has to put up with slow data whenever he connects with his phone. 

But school doesn’t really end at 4:30 p.m. for Ryle. On top of his classes, his teachers assign him modules he has to accomplish within the day.

“Last night, I finished schoolwork at 11 p.m. because I had to accomplish all my modules,” said Ryle.

And that’s just one week into their “blended learning” online classes.

According to Ryle, he hardly learns anything new but feels he needs to accomplish the modules for the sake of having grades. 

Kahit walang matutuhan basta may maipasa,” he says. Never mind that his parents spent a fortune on his tuition fees. 

He is not the only one with the same sentiments. Parents are voicing their concerns online, afraid their children are not learning anything. 

In the following posts, parents reveal their hidden anxieties about distance learning. 

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Students also made their voices heard on social media with the hashtag #AcademicFreezeNow. 

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Inflexible Teachers in Online Classes

What angered many people on social media are alleged posts depicting or purporting teachers to be insensitive and inconsiderate.

In one post, a school allegedly recommended the use of laptops or desktops during online classes. 

 

Selling Nudes for Laptops

The saddest stories about calls for academic freeze come from students selling their nude photos so they can buy laptops for their classes. 

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Teachers Feeling Stressed

But it’s not just parents and students who are stressed out about distance learning. Teachers are also feeling the pressure.

The current setup for distance learning is unsustainable, which is why parents, students, and some teachers are calling for #AcademicFreezeNow. We are living in unprecedented times, and educators must be sensitive to the challenges faced by families these days.  

In many homes, siblings who have the same class schedules are forced to share one computer or mobile phone to attend their classes the whole day. 

To compensate for physical classes, schools dump modules on their students, without regard for the amalgam of workload coming from all the subjects for each grade level. 

Other schools have yet to discover the convenience of Google Suite for Education, and insist on sending actual test papers to their students. 

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What’s worse, some students also pick up physical modules from schools, which they have to physically submit to the school after they are accomplished, defeating the purpose of distance learning

One does not need to be a ministry-trained educational expert to see the setup is stupid and perfunctory. 


Also Read: Google Provides Free Distance Learning Seminar for Parents and Teachers

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About The Author
Mario Alvaro Limos
Features Editor, Esquire Philippines
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