Being a new teacher in a new environment can be difficult on it’s own, but having to deal with new coronavirus guidelines as well has proven to be trying. Coronavirus is a new challenge to everyone, forcing them into doing and experiencing things that are not comfortable.Teachers are now having to implement new rules and be stricter in the classroom as well as having to adapt to online learning.
When asked what the biggest struggles are Ms.Kingsbury, the new art teacher, said, “Teaching online and in person at the same time for my students who are quarantining. I have them all together then have to jump onto my online class and make sure everything is communicated effectively as well as being easily accessible to at home students.”
Many teachers were already apprehensive about using virtual learning but it wasn’t the only concern. Wearing a mask in Knox County Schools is mandatory and enforcing these rules was a concern. Fortunately, it was met with little resistance.
“I think that the biggest thing educators were scared about with COVID was that we would have a lot of non- compliances as far as the hand washing and social distancing…and wearing of the mask.” says Ms. Paulson, the new assistant principal at Karns High, “That has been a non-issue.” She goes on to talk about how this experience with COVID has caused everyone to have a better understanding of one another.
“I think that we are a whole lot more tolerant of each other’s feelings and perception of things. I think this has caused us to focus on what’s important in life, focus on our families.” Some educators decided to not come back for the upcoming school year and continue to spend time with their families. “ This is a great group of students and… it seems at this school everyone gets along pretty well and the teachers really are wonderful and the administration lets be your own self in the classroom and that’s really what made me want to come back, just the environment.” And while COVID has been a huge negative in people’s lives there have been many positives.
“Honestly just meeting all of you guys…it’s nice to be seeing all my students everyday and to have that human interaction. I really enjoy having students in the classroom, so that’s been a nice positive.”
Coronavirus has caused many people a lot of struggle and hardships, but it has also brought people together. Families are able to spend more time with each other and get to experience new things that they thought they never would or just didn’t have the time for. COVID has caused a lot of people to come together with a better understanding of each other, and while there are many unknowns to this new thing, the positives have been able to make this journey more bearable.