Students have learned exclusively online for the past nine months, but the introduction of pilot classes has allowed small cohorts of students to return to campus during their regularly scheduled class time. On Nov. 9, Thousand Oaks High School launched six pilot classes where “blended” students learn in-person while “remote” students remain at home.
There are six classes that have been introduced as pilot classes: English 12CP with Ms. Burns, Chamber Orchestra with Mr. Roberts, Biology CP with Ms. Young and Ms. Snibley, English Foundations with Ms. Jeziorski, ASB with Ms. Ehret and Twilight AP Seminar with Ms. Beaudoin.
“We are excited to be back on campus piloting both blended and remote students,” ASB advisor Kellie Ehret said. “It is beneficial for the class to be back on campus because it allows us to be more collaborative as we begin to plan for both virtual and in person events and activities in the future.”
To ensure everything goes to plan as students return to campus in January, the pilot classes act as a way to adjust and plan ahead for in-person learning.
“The pilot classes will allow the school to examine what classes will look like when students return to campus on Jan. 19,” Principal Dr. Eric Bergmann said. “The experience will allow us to collect information and make any necessary adjustments.”
For some students, hybrid classes allow for better time management and work ethic.
“At school I feel I work much more effectively and I don’t have the temptations and distractions like I do at my house,” Marco said. “My peers and I also help keep each other focused.”
Both students and teachers partaking in pilot classes must adhere to social distancing guidelines, and this often looks like rearranging the classroom to provide more space.
“To keep students socially distanced during blended learning the desks in my classroom have been labeled with blue tape where students sit,” Ehret said. “This distances students seated throughout the room and proves to be incredibly effective.”
Whether it’s at home or in the classroom, students have the opportunity to choose what would be most beneficial to their mental and emotional health.