Student motivation decreases during pandemic

Adrian+Hall%2C+12%2C+beginning+to+work+on+an+essay+for+his+English+class.

Adrian Hall, 12, beginning to work on an essay for his English class.

Cameron Hatcher, staff writer

Many students have had some issue with school or a disliking to the homework assigned. And since the pandemic started, there’s been a significant increase in students not taking part with school or overall, not doing their work. There are a few reasons as to why more students than ever have had a challenging time focusing on school, from not caring enough about school to having issues at home. However, there are some reasons why students are struggling with school. According to The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), The Student Experience in Research University in California underwent a social experiment on their campus since the pandemic hit and discovered that the least reported learning obstacle was a lack of familiarity with technical tools and necessary online learning. 

 Another study at CMU.edu showed a list of possible reasons as to why a student may not be motivated for school. The study had said that students can be demotivated for several reasons, such as: they see little value in the course or its content, a student may not believe their efforts will improve their performance, they are demotivated by the structure and allocation of rewards, or are suffering from mental/physical health problems, among other things.

A senior from Navarre High School, who asked to remain anonymous, had their own reasons as to why they weren’t as motivated with the work as they could be. They said, “I am not motivated because the work given by the school doesn’t necessarily correlate with my ideal college or future job.”

Austin George, 12, supplied his reasoning for current loss of motivation in the past and present. “The school system makes it obvious that we, the students, are metaphorical numbers in the machine,” he spoke. Austin mentioned another reason for his motivation loss, “My parents would always talk about my grades or behavior in school despite my constant acknowledgment of my mistakes.” 

 Mrs. Lisa Pascoe, English teacher at NHS, also had an opinion on the topic when she was interviewed briefly. “Lots of freshman didn’t know what to expect, most of them were in lockdown during their 8th grade year and are now in high school, so they’re missing a social connection with other students.” She also said, “Isolation had made navigating the school difficult for the students.” When Mrs. Pascoe was asked to share her thoughts on how the pandemic has given more students less motivation to work, she responded with, “As school goes on, there will be ‘pockets’ of students that are unmotivated; they’re either burned out or they don’t know the lesson material….Everyone is motivated; they’re either motivated to do the work or simply not do the work.” 

With all the evidence given, it would be safe to say that the reasons as to why a student would lose motivation for school can vary. The two seniors had a somewhat distinctive look on school, while the teacher’s view was different, which is expected. However, it shouldn’t stop a anyone from being able to understand the internal struggles a student in high school can have and giving them proper time to recover. Maybe one day students can receive the guidance and motivation they need to push forward and succeed in life from the help of a teacher or even another student.