How educators are adjusting to teaching in a pandemic

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PRINCETON, WV (WVNS) — For students, parents, and teachers this school year has been filled with questions from the beginning. Teachers at Princeton High School want to make sure their students are happy and healthy when they walk through the door.

“I start my day with a wellness check, I just ask everybody how they are doing, are we having a good day,” said Allen Kade.

Kade is the choir director at Princeton High school. He said many teachers like him, are struggling to properly educate their students while keeping everyone safe.

One of the people he’s trying to keep safe is his mother, who is under hospice care.

“I don’t want to take anything back to her so I am doing what I have to, to protect my family,” said Kade.

He said he never thought to teach remotely because of how much his students mean to him.

But unfortunately not all teachers can afford to see their students face to face.

“I’ve cried some days, i just miss being able to engage with the kids, and so many of them cant talk with their eyes’. I miss those smiles,” said Molly Robinette, an english teacher at Princeton High School.

For over thirty years, students would run from across the school to give Mrs. Robinette a hug. However, she has a blood disorder, forcing her to teach completely remote, even if her students see her, they cannot greet her like they normally would. She said it can be very disheartening to teach in an empty classroom drained of it’s energy.

“Our equipment at best is terrible,” said Mrs. Robinette.

Mrs. Robinette said while her fellow faculty are a tremendous help in making sure she can meet with her students virtually, there is little they can do.

Robinette added students are reluctant to join, and when they do, there is either an issue with their computer or hers, and even things as natural as heavy rain can cut off her connection. For these reasons she would rather wait until school can be held normally.

“Until the kids can come back to school like kids and we can come back to school unmasked like teachers, there is now real learning going on,” said Mrs. Robinette.

Until then, teachers at Princeton Senior High school said they will continue to embrace the challenges.

“I applaud all teachers who are trying to do this, because we are trying to do it for the kids, and I think everybody is working at their maximum,” said Kade.

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