Students Struggle With Online Workload

Photo provided by Tuscarora student Carlos Zanabria created a petition to help lessen the workload for Loudoun County students.


One of the biggest complaints about online learning recently has been the workload. Many have expressed that the workload is ridiculously high compared to previous years, and students who are normally A students have been struggling to keep their grades afloat.

Recently a petition was created titled “Reduce the workload for LOCO students”, and has been sent around by much of the student population. The petition was created by Tuscarora student Carlos Zanabria, and currently has over 14,000 signatures. 

A message included from the creator of this petition wrote “I have begun to believe since Online school started our teachers have assigned us too many assignments to the point I’ve been getting sleepless nights and have been learning to submit assignments before 11:59 p.m. instead of actually learning the material. I have been an all A student my entire life and have never been this exhausted and stressed over school. I don’t even have time for after school activities or even going outside. I feel like if we bring enough attention to this petition we can actually get a chance in the amount of work we have to do. I feel bad for anyone that has a part time job while having to deal with online school. Thank you for reading this and have a great rest of your day.”

This sentiment has been repeated by several of the students within Loudoun County. They feel that considering the circumstances, the work is too much and too difficult to understand from an online standpoint. With school being online, this puts limitations on the way students learn and causes them to feel isolated when drowning in school work.

“The physical distance has created difficulties in learning the course content,” said junior Sheridan Traish.

Though they do not have full control, teachers have been doing their best to promote a learning environment that is less stressful for their students. Many have been following screen-free weekend plans and ending assignment due dates on Mondays. Teachers like biology teacher Jenna Cabaniss have made a regular effort to check in on her students’ progress.

“I frequently try to survey students and observe their work to see if students are getting far enough in our classwork to justify assigning the rest as homework,” Cabaniss said.

Last Tuesday, the school board met to discuss the options for fixing the issues concerning online learning. The board ruled that the AABB schedule was not working, and agreed to switch back to a regular ABAB schedule starting Nov. 4. Members in the school board pushed for students to return to school by December first. Many were disappointed when this notion was not passed, as several board members feel the best way to fix the problem of students struggling is to get them back into school. Regardless, the community is doing their best to work through this hard time and provide support for one another.

“I think it is important to remember that we are in the middle of a pandemic, so we should give ourselves and each other grace as we work to keep teaching and learning,” Cabaniss said.