ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – As Central Florida leaders are working to reopen schools amid the coronavirus pandemic, some students in Orange County have mixed feelings about the upcoming semester.
Parents in Orange County have until Friday to make a decision about which learning option their child will participate in beginning next month.
Andrew Carbon, 14, and his 12-year-old sister Aaniyah have spent their summer at the downtown Orlando Recreation Center playing basketball, but also learning safety precautions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. They’re a part of the city’s Parramore Kidz Zone Program.
“We have to wear a mask everywhere we go,” Andrew Carbon said.
Aaniyah Carbon said they put on hand sanitizer every time they enter the building.
Andrew Carbon is a rising ninth grader at Jones High School. He said going back into a classroom now seems scary.
“If it was my choice, I’d probably stay home,” he said. “A risk of going to school, not knowing who has COVID and who doesn’t have it.”
His little sister echoed those thoughts.
“Anybody at school can have it, because everybody is a suspect as of this point,” Anniyah Carbon said.
The pair said they’re not really opposed to learning online, but they miss their friends and teachers. Either way, their biggest concern right now is staying safe.
“I never thought I’d go through this,” Andrew Carbon said.
Andrew and his sister also shared a few benefits and challenges they discovered while learning online last school year.
“You can’t ask your teachers as much as you would inside the classroom, because you’re not right there in front of them,” Andrew Carbon said.
Aaniyah said distance learning can also mean a heavier workload.
“We can get the same education online as in school, but you’re getting more education online because they’re putting more work on there than what they’re giving at school,” said Aaniyah Carbon.
You can read more about the learning options for students at schools across Central Florida by visiting ClickOrlando.com/backtoschool.