Student Decides to Stay Remote in Efforts to Protect Family

By J1 Reporter Erin Connelly

When the announcement was made that students could return to school five days a week, a flood of emotions was brought to many people. There was excitement for getting to see everyone in the same place again and for the sense of familiarity that things are finally getting back to normal. There was maybe even the stress of having to go back to school and having less free time. 

The decision to return to the regular school schedule was made without a second thought by the majority of students. However, this was a much more difficult decision to make for those with underlying health conditions and those with family members at a higher risk. 

Senior Katie Corpuz lives with her parents and grandmother and she made the decision to go fully remote instead of returning to school to reduce the risk of getting her grandma, Lola,  sick. 

Corpuz is pictured with her Grandmother, Lola, at Christmas in 2019.
Photo courtesy of Katie Corpuz

Like anything, being fully remote for school has its advantages and disadvantages. Corpuz explains, “I enjoy having a more flexible schedule, it allows me to spend more time with my family and my dog, and I enjoy being able to sleep in a little bit longer.”

She also explained how being online full time is not as relaxing as it sounds. “You definitely have to make sure you are staying focused, and you have to really communicate with your teachers to stay on top of schoolwork.”

It can also be difficult facing the challenges of online school when only a small percentage of the school is still zooming while the rest are back in the classrooms. For teachers, that can be difficult to manage. Corpuz does admit, “It is more work making sure you get all the materials you need.” She went on to say that teachers sometimes have a hard time remembering to get all the materials to the online students because they are used to everyone being back in school. 

There are also interactions with others that you can only experience at school. “What I miss the most about going to school is the in between class conversations and talking with my friends in homeroom and in the halls before school.” Although there are many drawbacks to online learning, Corpuz is ultimately grateful that she has the opportunity to keep her grandmother safer in these unprecedented times. She said she is also grateful that she is now able to spend more time with her.

Being fully online is not for everyone and it does take more dedication to keep yourself motivated at home by yourself. Señora Caitlin Gaule, one of Corpuz’s teachers says of Corpuz, “She is an excellent student, online and in the classroom.”

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