BHS Administrators’ Reflections

BHS+Administrators%27+Reflections

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Interviewees ↓
Dr. Corbett
Mr. Hoppe
Dr. Neigel
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As an administrator at Bernard’s High School, how have you contributed to distance learning?

 

Dr. Corbett:

  • “Developed a survey to determine which students needed a device and/or WiFi access.
  • Distributed Chromebooks to students at school prior to remote learning.
  • Met students at BHS to provide them with Chromebooks and WiFi hotspots.
  • Coordinated assistance for struggling students.
  • Monitored student attendance.
  • Responded to student and parent concerns/needs.
  • Prepared and electronically disseminated general information and guidelines for remote learning.
  • Assisting teachers with technology needs.
  • Assisting students with technology needs.
  • Working with others in the district as well as outside groups to support those in need. Doing what we can to make sure families who have financial needs have housing and enough food.”

 

Mr. Hoppe: “In the beginning, we were trying to help teachers sort through the technology that we had at our disposal. I was experimenting with Screencastify and Nearpod. Although I came to realize very quickly that some teachers were way ahead of me!”
Dr. Neigel: “I worked with the other administrators to establish the schedule and parameters for distance learning. I have also worked hard to keep teachers and students in the loop about decisions that we have been forced to make due to school closures. I am proud of the collective work we have done.”

 

What are your goals to improve students’ lives? In other words, what is your vision for the future of this school?

Dr. Corbett: “I will work with the faculty, administration, and staff to help ensure that all students meet their potential.”

Mr. Hoppe: “I see us going back to normal, eventually. I am hoping that there will be no more snow days built into the calendar since we know how to teach virtually now! I hope we get permanent lights on the Olcott field so that all sports can play at least one night game.”

Dr. Neigel: “This is a big question, but our goals have not changed since we went on remote learning. My vision for the future of this school is to continue as a school community to work hard every day to help prepare students for college and careers. While this is a novel challenge during remote learning, the goal remains the same.”

 

Do you feel that it is more beneficial to communicate with all students virtually or in-person? Why?

 

Dr. Corbett: “I prefer to meet in person when possible/safe because it is much easier for me to communicate when I am physically present with the person(s) I am interacting with.”

Mr. Hoppe: “I like to communicate in-person. I am a people person! I like people, you can read their facial expressions better in conversations. Sarcasm is not as effective virtually! :o)”

Dr. Neigel: “While there are some conveniences to virtual communication, there are also times where it is important to communicate in person. I think that a blended approach is best.”

 

In your opinion, what are the positives and negatives of distance learning?

 

Dr. Corbett: “I know that many teachers and students miss the opportunity to speak to others…before class, during the change of classes, during lunch or study hall, etc. These opportunities for interactions that we took for granted are sorely missed by many. One positive is that students and teachers alike have become more comfortable with the use of technology to augment teaching and learning.”

Mr. Hoppe: “The positives are that it can be done. The effectiveness is in question but it can be accomplished. The negatives are that we are social animals. People are meant to engage with one another!”

Dr. Neigel: “The flexibility of the schedule for students is positive, but there are also some challenges to communicating virtually, especially when students are trying to learn challenging concepts.”

 

Do you prefer to work from home or in a school setting? Please explain.

 

Dr. Corbett: “I prefer to work in a school setting so that I have the opportunity to see and interact with students, faculty, administration, and staff.”

Mr. Hoppe: “Well today, I had several meetings outside so it was a good day to work from home! Seriously, I prefer the school setting. I like kids. I miss the social interaction.”

Dr. Neigel: “While I love being home with my family, I am not nearly as efficient here as I am in school. When I am at school, I do not have to yell at my kids to stop wrestling at the same time as I am trying to conduct an important meeting.”

 

Throughout this process, what important tips have you learned?

 

Dr. Corbett: “I have learned not to take so much for granted and to be thankful for all that I have.”

Mr. Hoppe: “Thank goodness for technology! Where would we be if we did not have virtual/distance learning?”

Dr. Neigel: “That no matter the circumstances, it is always important to be kind. It is very easy to get frustrated or be short with someone, but that does not help in the long run. We still need to be compassionate and understanding with one another. I have also learned quite a bit about how to create videos using Zoom, Screencastify, and iMovie, which is nice.”

 

During quarantine, what have you done to keep yourself occupied in your spare time?

 

Dr. Corbett: “Despite what some may believe, I actually find myself working as much, and sometimes more than when we were at BHS. I spend my “spare” time with my family and I have been busy with yard work and other home projects this spring.”

Mr. Hoppe: “I still do my anti-aging exercise routine every day! I also take graduate classes and work around the house.”

Dr. Neigel: “When we started this, I thought that I would have all of this additional free time, but that has not been the case. I am busier now than I was when we were in school! That being said, I love being able to hug my family and pet my dog during the day. I cherish the additional time with my boys.”

 

Once the quarantine is over, what is an activity that you are most looking forward to participating in?

 

Dr. Corbett: “I look forward to getting to the gym.”

Mr. Hoppe: “I cannot wait to go to a Mets game! I can’t wait to watch BHS athletes in action!”

Dr. Neigel: “Great question. I cannot wait to go out to my favorite restaurants with my wife and I am really looking forward to going to a baseball game with my boys.”

 

What are you doing to maintain/improve physical health during this quarantine?

 

Dr. Corbett: “I have been jogging, bicycling, and walking.”

Mr. Hoppe: “See question 7. I run every day and do “something” else every other day!”

Dr. Neigel: “I am trying my best to squeeze in some time to exercise during my day. Sometimes that is pushups or situps here or there just to take a break. That is not something I typically do in my office when we are in school.”