How Finals Have Affected Students and Teachers in the First Semester

This week, students and teachers at Venice High will finish off their last assignments,  and deadlines for finals week in the first full semester of distance learning. 

Finals this year were up to the teacher—they were optional, depending on the class. Many teachers cancelled finals altogether due to inconveniences and issues related to COVID-19. 

According to junior Jennifer Nava, “Many of my teachers didn’t assign us any finals, just projects that could boost our grades because they were concerned for a lot of the kids who were struggling with home issues aside from school.”

Some teachers also are not assigning finals, because they did not cover enough material, according to junior Cash Halverson.

“Due to COVID-19, some of my teachers are excusing or canceling my finals because a lot of the material had not been covered because of how online school is set up,” he said. 

There have also been complaints regarding students arguing that without taking finals, they cannot boost their grade. Some argue that their teachers should continue with finals so students can make improvements in their grades. 

English teacher Marcos Sandoval opted not to give a final exam to any of his students this semester and instead chose to assign final essays and final projects because scheduling became an issue.

“I did not want to stress myself or my students out anymore that we already feel,” he said. “Therefore I settled, on alternative final assignments that afford students the time and opportunity to demonstrate proficiency in a learning target the majority of the students are lagging in.” 

Sandoval agrees that this semester has been challenging concerning grading. Due to serious situations, Mr. Sandoval has been lenient in giving his students opportunities to have time to submit late work.

“I’ve wanted to give my students the opportunity to make up missing work due to the strenuous circumstances,” he said.