Adapting to Change: Pauline Sandoval

Adapting to Change: Pauline Sandoval

In the midst of a worldwide pandemic, nations have resorted to closing many public places, such as (but not limited to) restaurants, movie theaters, and amusement parks. With the pandemic and shutdown beginning in mid-March of 2020, it brought about a change none were expecting: the closure of the CUSD school district and other schools all around the state of Arizona. For the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, many schools shifted to an online format in hopes to finish out the school year, while others ultimately canceled the remainder of the year altogether. With the pandemic still at a high and rising toward the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year, the CUSD district needed a solution on how they would carry out the year and fast.

At the beginning of the school year, CUSD offered students a chance to pick from one of two options: continue with their school within the CUSD district online and shifting back to in-person learning when the time came, or branch off to the newly offered option of COA, Chandler Online Academy, which offered fully virtual learning and education experience for the school year. In one of many special cases, student Pauline Sandoval, a senior at Arizona College Prep-Erie, started the school year in Chandler Online Academy but then decided to transition back to in-person learning at the start of the second semester. We asked her a few questions about her unique experience and here’s what she had to say.

Q: What was the biggest change that occurred when switching back to in person?

A: The biggest change was that COA works at a slower pace. With COA being accelerated learning, the average school workload was a lot slower than what I’m used to. 

Q: What were some struggles of doing COA?

A: Some of the struggles with COA was that you had to wait a long period of time to get in touch with the teacher. Since it was all virtual and some teachers had about three times more classes than the average public school teacher, it made it harder to contact them and get fast replies.

Q: What were some benefits of doing COA?

A: Some of the benefits of COA is you get to go at your own pace, allowing you to focus time on what you struggle with and breeze through things that come easy to you. Also, the teacher grades your work of time rather than grade assignments due weeks ago.

Q: In your opinion which is better: COA or In-person?

A: In my opinion, in person is better because if I have questions on a topic, I can ask my teacher and receive an immediate response, compared to having to wait for a response from my instructors on COA.

Overall, the CUSD school district has shown its adequate ability to adapt to our nation’s current status in attempts to allow a fair and safe learning environment for all of its students. We would like to thank Pauline Sandoval (12) for her time and insight on her unique experience. Can’t wait to see what this senior does in the future; good luck throughout finishing the academic school year!