Teachers leaving, classrooms struggling

Mid-year disruption affects classes


Ashley Reyes

Recently Park has been struggling with teacher shortages, which can affect students’ learning and they are missing out on important engagement, especially with the end of semester one coming up. 

When my English teacher left, it was really difficult for me and other students to cooperate and be able to do assignments with no curriculum being left behind for students. This has caused students to struggle jumping back into the feeling of having a new teacher. 

Ever since the new teacher was introduced to the class, it was hard for the continuation of the classwork to begin. It was difficult having to start over with building a connection with the teacher, especially since some people had a stronger connection with the previous teacher. Not only did students have to readjust their way of learning, but they also had to get used to how assignments were structured.

Meanwhile, as the new English teacher was getting settled in, he tried figuring out how much the class had learned and what we’ve been over with my old teacher. As days passed, it slowly started to feel like I wasn’t actually learning or even progressing in the class. Although the teacher created lessons for us to do, the classroom was very unresponsive to his efforts, which caused me to feel unmotivated in the class —  it felt disorganized. 

During that period, he also made attempts at resetting the class many times by allowing us to choose and change units and assignments. But in the end, this just resulted in things being abandoned. 

To be more efficient, Park should continue to look more into the teachers they hire since it’s important to keep teachers. They should keep looking for better alternatives instead of having different substitute teachers each day. That way, if they ever come upon an issue with students being unresponsive, teachers can individually offer solutions. 

This would avoid the problem of the teachers feeling like they can’t direct their classes. If Park implements this, they will have better support with students and teachers in general. 

One thing that was positive from this experience was the leniency of grading. One of my teachers is in charge of grading for the whole overall class and I really appreciated how understanding he was because he sees and comprehends students’ perspectives and how it can impact students’ grades with the teacher leaving things empty in the grade book. This creates an opportunity for students to be able to adjust and fix their grade before the semester ends.