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Practicums struggle amidst COVID-19 safety guidelines

  • 1 min to read

Student-teaching has been caught up in a mess of last-minute changes and adaptations. Practicum students have had the option to teach online via Zoom or in-person and on Zoom, depending on the students’ comfortability levels. 

Olivia DeFord, senior, said this year feels completely different from previous years. DeFord completed two years of practicum and is now student-teaching. She said her biggest challenges are recognizing her students and getting to know them because they are only able to meet two or three days a week and the rest of the time is via Zoom.

For some, communication with their schools has been scarce but for DeFord, communication with her school has been great. 

Some schools have taken action in different ways- some have even shut down practicum programs completely. If schools do let students in, they have a set of instructions and limitations placed upon them. 

“I have had to get my temperature checked and answer screening questions for the past week. Now, all student-teachers have to get a negative COVID-19 test before we can return to the building and every two weeks after that. And practicum teachers potentially won’t be allowed at LPS this semester,” DeFord said.

It is just a matter of waiting until the risk rate goes down for practicum students and student-teachers to be able to actually spend time with their students and get the education they came to Doane for. This is a very good way to figure out what to do in case another virus spreads in the future, though. Being over-prepared is always better than being underprepared.