The first semester of the 2020-2021 school year has forced all teachers and students to have to adjust to an entirely new system of school. All of the work has been done remotely on a computer instead of writing on paper. Students and teachers wake up and log into Zoom classes instead of getting ready and leaving the house to go to school. All of this is new to almost everybody. With this time of year being the end of first semester of school, students would be starting to prepare for finals. But after consideration by the school board, it was decided that finals would not happen for this semester because of how everything has played out due to Covid-19. To nobody’s surprise, many people are completely on board with the cancellation of finals.
“It would definitely help out a lot especially just to pass my classes,” said senior Michal Zdanowicz. “It would also let me focus on other important stuff in my life right now like my future, and family.”
“I believe that our administration made the right decision,” said statistics teacher Mr. Galfi. “With block scheduling, the amount of time that I get to spend with each class during the week is reduced quite a bit. Not having finals allows me more time to teach some important concepts to my students that I would not have gotten to if I needed to prepare for finals.”
Although this may be the case for many students and teachers, some people feel as if not having finals may cause a setback for the sake of their grades.
“I feel that finals being canceled is both a negative and a positive depending on who you ask,” said senior Filippo Cacucciolo. “For some people, finals bring their grades down a tremendous amount. For others, finals help to get their grades up to an acceptable level.”
Considering finals have always been done on bubble sheets during an extended class period, it would be very hard to imagine how different finals would have been if students were required to take them. All the work that has been done by teachers and students has all been remote so having to do finals online would be another completely new process to what has been a completely new way of life everybody has been living this whole year.
“I do think finals would have been very different this year considering everything is online,” said senior Jessica Krause. “It has been a lot harder for some students to learn and gather the information necessary to take that test at the end of the year that has such a huge impact on their grade.”
“I think that finals would have been harder due to us being online now,” said senior Easton Dietz. “I feel like some of the curriculum needed to be learned for a final for every class was cut short a little bit.”
With life in general being more of a challenge for everybody this year, it is good to have some slack cut for the people who have been trying their very best to succeed with whatever they are trying to accomplish in life at the moment. Whether that is with school, work or family-related situations, not having finals will be beneficial for all people to make their life a little easier.
“Not having finals really does make life easier right now,” said senior Mia Johnson. “I don’t have to stress, and it takes a lot of hours of studying away. Now I will feel more secure about my grades going into winter break.”
“It has relieved your teachers (and hopefully students) of a lot of stress,” said Mr. Galfi. “A lot of work goes on behind closed doors after students take finals. The grading process can be a grueling one. Not having finals will allow teachers more time to spend with family and reenergizing themselves over winter break, so hopefully they can come back 2nd semester full of new and engaging ideas.”
All of the seniors are catching a big break here because with coronavirus hitting in the beginning of second semester, the class of 2021 was able to skip finals at the end of their junior year plus now having no finals for both semesters of their senior year. This class is now able to put their focus solely on their decision of which school students will be attending in the fall of 2021. For all of the other classes, students can focus on their current classwork assigned to them to boost their GPA so they will have a bigger chance to get accepted into the school of their choice in the future. As for teachers, getting a break from the finals grading process will be good for them as they are always working hard to make sure students get the proper education needed to proceed with their life. With this year being the hardest year of many people’s lives, not having finals this semester is truly a blessing and a big break for all people to finally be able to enjoy some of their extra time to do what they need to do.