Is This School Year Better Than Last?


We are finally back in school full time…but is it actually that much better than last year?

Ashlee Thompson, Editor-in-Chief

It goes without saying that last year was hard for everyone. One of the year’s biggest hardships for students was school. Juggling between remote learning and in-person learning, school turned into something we just had to do, like a chore. School wasn’t the learning environment it was before. To many, 2020-2021 was a throwaway year. 

When mandates began to relax and vaccines rolled out last January, we believed that the 2021-2022 school year would finally return to complete normality. And while we are still wearing masks, many consider this year  a big improvement.. 

“I think this year is better than last year because I am able to learn in the classroom and I am able to ask questions and get hands-on help with things I am struggling with,” senior Haley Christy-Woods said. “This year I feel like I am learning new things…Last year I felt like I was just going through the motions and doing the work.”

Students say this year has been better due to actually learning material in person and being tested on it–although the lack of standardized testing last year has made that transition hard. Senior Sheridan Tolley said, “This is the first time in a while I have had to really study for a test, which is extremely hard when you don’t have study habits.” As both a remote learner and an in-person student last school year, Tolley–and many other students–didn’t have to take any tests, which ultimately led to almost no studying. 

“This school year has stressed me out more than any other school year, but I’m happy to be back and in a learning environment,” Tolley said. 

Although students have expressed that this year has been slightly better, not everyone thinks so. Mr. Hodge, a science teacher at Greenbrier East, said he thinks students have gone “bonkers” due to “being trapped behind masks and closed doors.” 

I asked multiple students who chose the remote learning option last year if they would choose that same option if given the chance this year. All of the students said no, demonstrating  the superiority of in-person learning.  

Even though the bar was set low for improvement, I, and many other students, are excited to be back to school the way we all remembered it.