Coming Back To School From Hybrid and Distance: A Comparison


How hybrid and distance learning compare to in person as we approach the halfway point in the year

Over the past 18 months, three learning models have been introduced to accommodate a global pandemic. Two years ago, that sentence would leave people scratching their heads and wondering, “What went wrong?” The pandemic has turned everything upside down, but public education has been hit especially hard. 

For students and teachers alike, each learning model came with a unique set of challenges. However, the general consensus among students is that in-person is far better than distance learning. “Sometimes I’d feel super disconnected from what was going on,” said freshman Jack Manfredi. “I didn’t really get to know any of my teachers on a more personal level.”

Last Spring, the hybrid model provided a bridge between distance and in person learning. Mondays were asynchronous for everyone, and then students attended in person twice a week with the additional two days being online. Junior Sarah Pappalardo said if she were to pick one learning model, it would be hybrid. “It was nice to have two days where I could have a structured schedule while in school, and then have another two days during the week that were more laid back,” said Pappalardo

With the threat of the Omicron variant looming closer every day, it is unclear what the future will bring. Omicron is more contagious than Delta and could cause major damage if it gets into schools, potentially shutting them down again. “It’s really been a go with the flow kind of thing. The heart of it is that we keep you kids at the focus, what’s best for [students],” said Assistant Principal Rodney Jones, “your academic, social, emotional, all that growth, we’ve got to keep that in the focus.”