COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Due to COVID-19, students in Ohio will be continuing their distance learning for the rest of the academic year. This means students will go several months in a row without learning in the classroom. According to experts in education, that could come with some long-term effects.
“All schools are trying to do online learning,” said Dr. Antoinette Miranda, Associate Chair of the Department of Educational Studies at Ohio State University. “It still doesn’t replace being in the school six to eight hours a day.”
She says when it comes to academics, students’ reading and math levels could take a hit by not being in the classroom for an extended period of time.
“Yes, some learning is better than no learning but there’s still going to be setbacks and we have to sort of recognize that and accept it,” she said. “But also look at what are the things we can do to be able to improve the situation understanding kids are going to come back with these deficiencies or lack of academic skills or things they’ve missed.”
Dr. Miranda’s background is in school psychology. Two of her other big concerns are the socialization kids are missing out on with distance learning and their mental health.
“If you are not mentally healthy, you are not going to be able to achieve academically, they go hand in hand,” she said. “So yes, the reality is is we have to accept there’s going to be losses but we also can look at what are some of the ways that we can not make it as painful.”
Aaron Fuerst has two kids in school right now, one in fifth grade and one in second grade. He says so far, distance learning has gone pretty well but also says there are just some things about a classroom setting that can’t be recreated at home.
“You’re learning but you’re not learning the same way,” he said. “You’re not having the interaction, you’re not feeding off the energy of the other kids so it’s a completely different thing.”