Oppressive Work Load Prevails in New School Year

Holly Williams, Staff Writer

With a year like no other, one thing remains constant: an overwhelming amount of school work. 

The hybrid schedule induced strain on teachers and students alike, and with teachers trying to “teach” their entire curriculum in essentially three days, students are struggling to keep up. 

Let me be clear, students are not learning. I am not learning. We are essentially checking off boxes on the curricular to-do list. It is just one topic after another, one assignment after another. The pace is grueling with no end in sight. Students are just completing homework to get it done without retaining the information. There is just too much work to dedicate the time to actually learning the material. 

I understand that as an honors student I signed up for more work, but that does not mean that I should do mindless busy work on top of an extensive curriculum. 

Recently I had to write five essays of at least two pages each for a class. We had about three weeks to work on it, but we learned the topics for two essays two days before it was due. With little to no guidance and grand expectations, the process was extremely stressful. 

This daunting work load is nothing new, but the balance of work between all of my classes is precarious and is easily tipped, especially when teachers assign mindless busy work. 

In a certain class I can only say that we have spent three days since the beginning of the school year talking about the lessons. With mindless activities done on our remote and many in-person days, the only meaningful work we have done in class is taking tests. Every chapter we have had to learn on our own, and the teacher does not follow up with an explanation or discussion. I’m not learning, and talking to my peers, I’m not the only one. 

I understand this learning environment is difficult for teachers as well as students, but I also feel that they are expecting the world from us. Teachers complain that we are not putting in the effort on work, but then turn around and yell at us for not getting work done while assigning more assignments. 

With the unique circumstances we are in, teachers need to be realistic about their expectations and flexible with their lesson planning. If the teachers would provide their lesson plans a week in advance and be flexible due dates, then the work would be more manageable.

Although this year has changed how we live in many ways, some of my teachers are still teaching as though nothing has happened. The speed in which they teach the content is the only noticeable change; the class “learns” the same amount of content, but it is just at an accelerated rate. The pace and the amount of school work is almost unbearable.

I feel that I am only giving 80% to everything in my life: school, family, friends and myself.

On top of trying to be a normal teenager with a social life, applying to college, taking standardized tests and deciding on a career path, the school work during this year has been overwhelming and it needs to change.