As the 2020-2021 school year begins to unfold, WA has decided to cancel midterms or finals due to how COVID-19 has affected students’ and teachers’ class time together.
According to Dean Dan Twomey, due to the limited amount of class time teachers have with students, WA’s Administrative Council, including curriculum coordinators, deans, and guidance, and principals, decided that the time typically spent reviewing material to prepare for exams could better be used for learning new material.
“When finals and midterms took place, exams would typically take a week to two weeks to really slow things down for students to prepare. However, we don’t have much consistent time for teachers to meet with their students,” Twomey said.
Teachers are still expected to give out assessments to students, however, it must be completed within the ninety minute time period they have with their students.
Tests this school year will now be held differently depending on how teachers are requiring their students to take them, and the type of student who is taking it, hybrid or RLA.
“They [teachers] have to continuously adjust their schedule based on how their students are doing and can’t easily skip over something. It was really hard to say that there were going to be finals,” Twomey said.
While this school year has been different from WA’s typical school year, many students are relieved that they are not required to take these exams this year.
“I think not having midterms or finals this year is going to have a positive impact on students. Given everything that has been going on, I think it’s a great idea to alleviate some of the stress that students, myself included, feel during these exams,” junior Shreya Krishnan said.
Some freshmen are on the same boat as everyone else.
“I feel relieved that we won’t have to worry about midterms or finals this year, because students are most likely dealing with so many other sources of stress that I am glad they [semester exams] have been cancelled,” freshman Ankit Panda said.
In the end, Mr. Twomey believes that cancelling midterms and finals will reduce student stress which many have complained about in the past.
“I think that there are plenty of times where students will be given the opportunity to practice their time management skills and study habits, especially now, where everyone is trying to adjust to the new normal”, Twomey said.