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‘There’s not too much social’: Seniors miss out on high school milestones due to remote learning

Updated: Feb. 2, 2021 at 11:15 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Seniors should be planning for in-person graduations and proms, and finishing their final high school with a bang.

Instead, inching close to a year since the COVID-19 pandemic started, large gatherings and parties remain in doubt.

They are missing out on social life and many high school milestones.

At Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, high school students can return to in-person instruction on Feb. 22, almost a year since they last stepped foot into schools.

While it feels like a lot of the public debate over in-person learning is centered around our youngest children, remote learning has been miserable for high schoolers, especially seniors.

Several seniors told WBTV their confidence has been shaken because of the pandemic, and not being allowed to attend class in person.

For CMS seniors like Sorrells and Sophie Tyndall, there’s no more talking with friends in the hallways before class.

“I just spend my days on Zoom calls and then homework,” Sorrells said. “That’s kind of all it is, There’s not too much social.”

It’s also been challenging to stay involved with extracurricular activities, and the back-and-forth with sports being canceled.

“Just growing up my whole life and all these teenage movies that we watch, they all go to prom,” Sorrells said. “It’s just crazy to think that we may not ever get to experience that which would be really upsetting.”

Tyndall told WBTV that she loves art and wants to continue doing it in college.

“With senior year you do a portfolio, and so having that kind of, I still had to complete my portfolio, but mostly alone,” Tyndall said. “So that was more difficult this year than it would have been if we were in school.”

Brent Morris, the executive director of Learning Help Center in Charlotte, said encouraging seniors to still find an outlet despite remote learning setbacks is crucial.

“They say only 20 percent of what you learn is learned in the classroom,” Morris said. “We’ve got to break this cycle of discouragement around being isolated.”

Tyndall told WBTV she has learned that these are things she can’t control.

“I think flexibility is huge for this year,” she said. “That’s kind of been my mantra and just like motivation and peace and just kind of being okay with not things being in my control,”

Seniors are hoping they can at least have a normal ending to this whirlwind of a year.

Myers Park posted on social media a “Save the Date” for its prom to be held at Bojangles Coliseum.

CMS told WBTV that no decisions have been made about prom or graduations yet.

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