First quarter coming to end causes immense pressure for staff, students

Senior+Ryan+Meyer+writes+down+notes+from+a+lecture+to+prepare+for+upcoming+assignments+and+tests.

Photo courtesy Ryan Meyer

Senior Ryan Meyer writes down notes from a lecture to prepare for upcoming assignments and tests.

As the first quarter of the school year came to an end, teachers and students experienced stress and pressure. Teachers rushed to get grades in and students were assigned a tremendous amount of work and tests.

Since this year is the first year that MCPS has engaged in online school, students and teachers have faced unexpected challenges.. This past quarter students were getting adjusted to figuring out the best ways to complete the necessary material while not being in person. “Quarter one was interesting and stressful, especially toward the end. It seemed as if I had tests, quizzes, and projects in every class all due within the same week,” senior Ryan Meyer said.

Studying for the tests and quizzes last quarter was harder for students because they were learning all their information online. Staring at a screen for hours on end is hard for students, especially when they are trying to memorize information needed for tests. “Virtual learning has made it harder to grasp information. When studying I tend to have to look over my notes from my teachers multiple times,” senior Nandita Gupta said.

Virtual learning has made it harder to grasp information. When studying I tend to have to look over my notes from my teachers multiple times”

— Nandita Gupta

Schoolwork was not the only struggle that students faced during the first quarter. School sponsored events were cancelled that were normally the highlight of students’ years. Sports seasons and homecoming were cancelled and it took a toll on the community. “Attending sports events and hanging out with my friends is one factor that makes the first quarter more bearable. It makes sure that my whole life does not revolve around school and I am able to have an outlet when I am stressed. It has been hard not being able to hang out with my friends and see them like I used to,” senior Jenna Robinson said.

The last week of the quarter is not only stressful for students, but is also stressful for teachers. Teachers have to get their grades in and continue teaching material. “For English class, we have our big projects at the end of the quarter because we are wrapping up a unit and are doing a summative assignment. Also at the end of the quarter teachers will realize that they did not meet the MCPS and Wootton standards for how many assignments they need in the gradebook, so the last week can lead to many assignments being piled on to meet those standards,” English teacher Daniel Pecararo said.

Now that the first quarter is done, students are focused on how to do better during the second quarter. Teachers and students are now more comfortable with being online and are more adjusted. “Going into the second quarter, I am a lot more organized with my classes and work to be done. I am also more aware of what is to be expected of me than when the school year started,” junior Angela Roach said.