Students Are Experiencing a “Covid Slump”


Arielle Adelman, Contributor

During quarantine, many students noticed their grades falling due to a lack of motivation. Online school made students feel drained, and this year it is even worse. According to Chalkbeat, an education resource, the average student has dropped three to six percentile points in reading and 12 percentile points in math.

COVID-19 has brought a lot of struggles to everyone’s lives. Because of the lockdown, students were forced to do school through a screen. Many students, like South Broward High School senior Peter Ditto, did not like this. He felt like logging into a computer made it feel like school was optional.

“Online school made school feel fake in a way. Even though we’re back to school in-person, that feeling of school being optional hasn’t gone away,” said Ditto.

This year, he has been struggling with motivation and thinks his school isn’t doing enough to make his education more interesting.

 “The school could be more interactive and fun. Motivation doesn’t just happen when you are sitting around bored all day. The school could stop pressuring us. They talk about how we’re going to through away our future instead of trying to help us with it,”  said Ditto. 

He says motivation hasn’t only been lacking in school, but also during after-school activities. Ditto is an active member of the South Broward Marching Band. Over lockdown, he found it hard to play.

“Picking up my saxophone and playing it was pretty difficult when I realized I had no one to play it for. I had lost my touch. I didn’t get what the point was anymore,” said Ditto. 

Other students, like SBHS senior Isabella Piccolo, feel the school’s neglect as well.

“The school could definitely bring some more positive reinforcement into people’s lives. They could focus more on our achievements instead of on our failures. Instead of yelling at us for getting an F on an assignment, congratulate us when we get an A,” said Piccolo.

And the “COVID slump” isn’t only affecting students. Teachers as well have been noticing a change in students’ attitudes towards life and motivation. SBHS teacher Carol Spears noticed students’ grades dropping when we came back to in-person school. 

 “I started noticing when I had to put in interim report cards. I thought my class was easy, so I didn’t get why they were failing,” Spears said.

Spears has been teaching dramatic arts at South Broward High School for over 18 years. She considers herself a motivational expert and has a few tips for keeping up motivation.

“Students should make a to-do list of all these things they have to do that day. I know it sounds super tacky, but it works,” said Spears.

According to Health Direct, an Australian health organization, keeping up your motivation isn’t that hard once you keep track of what you’re trying to be motivated for. Students can create a list of goals, write reminders for themselves, and most importantly, keep their eye on the endgame. 

“I know many students feel alone right now, but they don’t need to feel that way. There are plenty of resources at school to help keep your focus on your goals,” Spears said.

Motivation isn’t some secret that needs to be unlocked. According to Vanderbilt University, the key to motivation and drive is staying organized, keeping track of your goals, and surrounding yourself with fun and positive people

“Motivation and good grades go hand in hand,” said Spears. “Doing well in school can be motivation enough.”