Grace Curl ~ Guest Writer
Covid-19 has affected how students in the University of Lynchburg’s education department conduct their classroom observations.
The university has designed new ways for teacher candidates to complete observations from their residences to fulfil the field experience needed for teacher licensure. Student candidates were expected to begin the process of getting hands-on experience; however, because of the shift to online education, it is not currently possible.
Michael Kelly, director of field experience and teacher licensure, said, “The obvious reason is that we do not want the cross contamination of communities.” It is important to keep the university community safe, as well as the public schools that host university students.
Clare Crotty, a junior, said, “Theoretically, yes, I would love to be able to do student teaching in person, but seeing how the world is right now, I understand that is not possible.” Crotty spoke about the importance of “small interactions with the class” and using what is learned in college classes and applying them in the classroom.
Many education majors are left experiencing in-class observations outside of the classroom setting.
William Mitchel, a sophomore, said, “It would be easier and more fulfilling if I was in a classroom and I could really see how the kids are doing with these teachers.” Mitchel is experiencing his first encounter with observations and is working with the ATLAS website to provide videos and simulate classroom experiences.
The safety of students and the wider community remains the top priority for the university’s Education department.
Clare Crotty Crotty_Ce@lynchburg.edu William Mitchell email@example.com Michael Kelly firstname.lastname@example.org