By the Pawprint Writing Club
Special to the Cloverdale Reporter
The Pawprint Writing and Newsletter Club at École Salish Secondary School surveyed staff and students about the COVID-19 pandemic and the results were surprising.
Despite the disappointment of missing the end of the school year – and the loss of grad ceremonies for some – most respondents said they felt positive. However, many were looking forward to the easing of restrictions and getting back to normal.
Forty respondents completed the survey which mainly dealt with online schooling and life under COVID-19.
Even with the social and mental challenges that COVID-19 has brought about, respondents said they had a “newfound appreciation” for family. Survey respondents had conflicting opinions about online schooling and how to improve it.
Question 1 asked, What is the first thing you are going to do when the quarantine is over?”
More than 50 per cent of respondents indicated they wanted to hang out with friends. Going to movies, waterparks, concerts, the PNE, and throwing parties were frequently mentioned activities involving friends. The second most mentioned activity was shopping. Respondents also indicated professional haircuts were a priority.
Question 2a asked, “What are some good things that happened during the quarantine?
One hundred per cent of respondents indicated they had positive experiences during the lockdown.
Most indicated a positive experience came from some form of learning or self-improvement and some form of positive experience from being forced to spend time with family.
More than 50 per cent of survey participants indicated learning a new hobby as a positive experience. Some newfound hobbies included: baking, cooking, and arts and crafts.
Question 2b asked, What are some difficult things that happened during the quarantine?
Ninety-seven per cent of respondents indicated they had negative experiences during lockdown. Common themes of not being able to see friends and boredom came up frequently. More than half of negative responses (55 per cent) described declines in mental health due to a lack of human interaction and normal societal structure.
Question 3 asked, What are your thoughts about online school and what is one thing you would change about it?
The number of respondents who liked or disliked online schooling was fairly equal. Those who liked the way they were being taught noted it was easier and more flexible than regular in-school teaching. Respondents who did not like online schooling reported feeling overwhelmed or confused by the workload, citing a lack of instruction.
The most popular suggestions regarding changes to online schooling included: reducing the workload, making due dates for classes spread out so that several assignments are not due on the same day, and having more connection with teachers and classes via video calls.
Some also noted screen time was hurting their eyes and giving them headaches, suggesting it would be healthier if some assignments were done on paper.
Survey results can be found here on survey monkey.
— written and edited by Pawprints members: Heather Brand (Grade 11), Christina Park (Grade 12), Brianna Ragsdale (Grade 11), Keean Fisk (Grade 11), Kiera McAllister (Grade 11), Amanda Miller (Grade 10), Owen Muller (Grade 10).