Zoom: It Should Be Obsolete

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Rebecca Silber ’23

Although remote learning may seem ideal for some students—waking up late, showing up to class in pajamas, enjoying home cooked breakfast and lunch—it is not a productive way of learning. Physically going into the classroom and learning face-to-face with teachers alongside other classmates is something vital that cannot be replaced. Given Ramaz’s strict COVID-19 protocols, most importantly requiring everyone to be fully vaccinated, students are in the strongest position to remain safe in-person during this school year. And in order to ensure that this transition to in-person learning goes as efficiently as possible, Zoom can no longer be an option for students.

 Settling back into the real world requires us to leave many of our virtual-era habits behind. For example, texting and Facetiming our friends became the new normal during COVID-19, but now that we can socialize safely in-person, while following appropriate health protocols, there’s no reason to continue communicating with our friends solely through technology. Similarly, Zoom was a great substitute for in-person learning during COVID-19, but it was a temporary replacement—not a permanent one.

  In-person learning is how school has always been, and should continue to be, in the foreseeable future. Not only does it allow students to truly pay attention and grasp the material they are learning, but it provides them with a social life. Decades of research show that interacting with others increases one’s sense of happiness and well-being—seeing fellow classmates and developing connections with teachers is something that cannot be achieved through online learning.

  Choosing to keep Zoom as a learning option will bring about the worst in students. It will foster an environment of laziness where many students view going into the building as optional. In the most recent school year, many students took voluntary Zoom days just because they weren’t “in the mood” to come in person. Zooming in for one day instead of going in-person may seem harmless, but when other students hear of this and become jealous, the dominos will fall.

  In the end, in-person learning is simply a healthier and more efficient environment than remote learning. As long as Ramaz continues to mandate students and teachers to follow the necessary COVID-19 protocols over the course of this semester, the school has no reason to continue allowing students to use Zoom.