On October 23rd, North Little Rock High School began participating in Virtual Learning Fridays. Virtual Learning Friday is when students do not have to attend school face-to-face or virtually. This day is allocated to provide an additional day for students to catch up on work and to help improve students’ grades during the time of inconvenience and chaos caused by the coronavirus pandemic. It also provides time for teachers to grade work and make lesson plans. Even though this “free day” is in place to help students, it can also cause students to fall behind.
Many students and teachers feel like virtual learning Friday is a great opportunity for students to perform better in their classes. Face-to-face Mahagani Burley remarked, “I think virtual learning Fridays are going to improve our grades because it’s giving us an extra day to get caught up on our work that we might have forgotten about or might have not had time to do during the week.” This free day gives students no excuse to fall behind, since they are given multiple days to complete their assignments. It is also a good day for students to get an understanding of their assignments by asking questions they could not ask during regular school hours.
However, others think students are not taking virtual learning Friday seriously and still continue not to get their work done. Students may feel like this is a free day, and they do not have to complete any work and just sleep in; so will grades really improve? From a teacher’s perspective, there are some advantages and disadvantages. “I think virtual Fridays are a great idea and a great opportunity for students to do homework or make up work in order to raise their grades,” Mr. Whitt, 11th grade History teacher, explains, “Up to this point, I don’t know that students are actually taking advantage of the opportunity, but maybe that will change.”
Let’s be honest, who really does homework on Friday? For the ones who do, I applaud you. Personally, I believe that the concept of virtual learning Fridays is preventing students from failing– if they take advantage of the opportunity. I also believe that most students will not take the time to do their missing assignments on Fridays. Since all the assignments are technically due on the following Sunday, most students will complete their assignments then. With record numbers of students still struggling to pass their classes, it’s hard to see the advantages.