Students share mixed feelings on distant learning classes


Placer students can view Del Oro students (above), and Colfax students in distant learning classes.

In recent years at Placer High, the foreign language department, more specifically, French 3, has offered distance learning to Students in Del Oro who do not have access to the class on their campus. This new addition includes a large screen where students from Del Oro can see into the classroom, while the class can see them and interact with one another through the lessons.
With distance learning added to French 3, there are mixed emotions and opinions from students regarding the program
Gwen Conlee is a former French 3 student and a senior at Placer, having taken the class her junior year. She believes that the technical difficulties regarding the program disrupted class, taking away time for education.
“I wasn’t really a fan because it [distance learning program] was really distracting and frustrating because it took away the teachers time…throughout the semester we had to call in Tech help” Conlee stated.
In addition, Conlee believes that the attention both groups of students received was imbalanced, with the favoring of Del Oro, solely due to technological issues.
“I think just because of how much attention the technology side of it gets, not necessarily the kids, but just setting it up,” according to Conlee.
On the other side, a number of students enjoy having distance learning in their class and find it nondisruptive throughout the lessons, including Ethan Vaughn, Placer Junior and current French 3 student. Vaughn has two friends from Del Oro who happen to be in the distance learning class for French 3. He believes that it is advantageous due to the fact that distance learning can provide options for those who want to take courses not taught at their school.
“I like it, it’s kind of cool to see the people from a different school. It’s not very distracting either, it’s behind us and you don’t really look at it, it’s good for the other schools too, Vaughn stated.
Contrary to Vaughn, Ali Conway, Placer senior and former French 3 student did not particularly like the program, with technological interruptions being one of the main reasons.
“It was definitely disruptive… Just having that 40 inch screen behind you and random people staring in, and there would be technical issues that would disrupt the lesson.” Conway stated.
Furthermore, Conway recounts the day she and her classmates walked into the classroom for their first day, seeing the new addition to her French 3 class.
“…It wasn’t like that [In regards to the lack of distance learning in her previous French classes] in French 1 and 2. French 3, you walked in and there was a giant TV and we were expected to be okay with it…” said Conway.
In a different sense, Placer junior, Mary Petrovich, does not mind the program and believes that is opens the opportunity for Placer students to get to know other students around the area.
According to Petrovich, “I think that the advantages are that we get to know the students from a different school and environment and we also get to compare and contrast the differences in classes from different schools.”
That being said, while some may or may not like the aspect of having distance learning in their classrooms, the program offers new opportunities for ambitious students to broaden their educational learning outside of their own school.