Doherty Embarks on a Second Hybrid Semester

Doherty High School’s Current Covid-Learning Plan

Students+sit+socially+distanced+in+the+Senior+Commons%2C+beside+the+masked+Spartan+statue.+

Chloe Seay

Students sit socially distanced in the Senior Commons, beside the masked Spartan statue.

Aleigha Wagner, Staff Writer

Starting off a new semester, School District 11 has decided to go back in-person with a Hybrid Model for high schools. Students have been separated into two groups based on the first letter of their last name. Classes will also be on a block schedule, Tuesdays and Thursdays are 1st through your 4th class. Wednesdays and Fridays will be your last four classes on your schedule 5th through 8th.

Students with last names A-L will be in the first group and M-Z will be the second. The first group will be going Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and the second group will go on Thursdays and Fridays. According to Doherty High School’s Return To Learn Plan, this allows students to have the benefit of regular school and direct interactions with their teachers.

Students will also have the benefit of switching to completely remote learning by emailing your assigned grade level counselor, but it may take a few days to make this change. Lockers are not available due to covid-19, but students taking gym will still be able to change and take their clothes with them without using the lockers.

Students will need their IDs they got at the beginning of the school year to enter the building. There will be scanners for them to scan in. Doherty student Deanna Hunsucker, a sophomore this year, gave her opinion on hybrid learning: “I think that they should do it if they are ready and it’s safe. But if it’s not, don’t push anything they need to be very careful and not rush things.” Students of this school can have the benefit of a choice to go in person or not.

Doherty High School English teacher, Ms. Martin, stated her experience with hybrid learning: “My experience with hybrid learning has been positive and negative. The positive aspects of it involve flexibility with lessons and class activities (both in-person and virtual). Balancing online students with in-person students has been my greatest challenge. I want to interact and regard both equally, and I struggle to do that. Either way, I feel like one group gets less attention and that frustrates me.”

Mrs. Moore, a math teacher at Doherty, gave her opinion as well: “I like anything that gets students in the building! Everything about being here is so important: the social connections cannot be overstated and the routine of just getting out of the house can make such a difference in how we feel. As a teacher, I really love having students in class because I can help so much more. If a student says they understand, I can glance at their paper [or screen] and make sure that’s true and correct any errors they might be making. Math concepts can be hard but looking at them with someone just makes it easier. Not going to lie, the other day during class, several students were in their seats and asking questions and we were having a conversation and, well, I almost cried. It’s really good to make that human connection again!”

Mrs. Moore also discussed some hopes, noting, “I just really hope that students will work with me (and all their teachers) to make this the best learning experience possible. It’s obviously not ideal but we have to work with what we have!”

“I know this may surprise some students (ha!) but just be aware that teachers generally know when you are online but doing something else or are lying in bed. It is so tempting to not really pay attention to that screen for class (although it’s not so bad for a video game?) but it is important.  We as teachers will do all we can to help you, but you have to do the work. If you are in a situation where you have to care for siblings or have other obligations, be sure to let your teacher know so together we can figure out a successful plan for your education. We really do care about the whole of you. We are Sparta! We can overcome this difficult time. It may not be fun, it may not be easy, but it can be done!” Mrs. Moore added.

This year has been unlike others, but these schedules and changes are made to help protect Doherty students from this virus. Wearing a mask and keeping fellow students safe is one of Doherty’s top priorities.