Learning routines have also been upended around the globe. According to a new report, a staggering 91 percent of the world’s students unable to continue classroom-based learning. For some, the shift to online education has been a difficult adjustment. “I have classes in the morning, and that helps me get up,” says Aslin Hernansez. “But it’s hard to study from home—it’s hard to stay focused. And I miss my school and friends.” Rayquain agrees, especially regarding the aspect of connecting with people in person. “I’d like to be back in school,” he says. “I miss being around friends and teachers. I miss my school family.”

For others, the switch to online learning has been a positive change. “I like learning online,” says Barron, who was finishing his GED when the crisis began. “I get distracted in class—it’s hard to concentrate with people talking around me. Online, I can work at my own pace. I don’t have to rush.”

Education has been disrupted in other ways, too. Victoria Hincapie, a Youth Opportunity Ambassador originally from Colombia who now lives in Washington, D.C. finished her bachelor’s degree before the crisis hit. However, the pandemic has impeded her aspirations to start graduate school in the United States. “In planning for my post-secondary transition,” she explains, “I applied for a scholarship with the help of my advisor, but it was canceled and postponed until September. Therefore, I will not know the scholarship decision until the end of Fall 2020. Despite that, I will continue with my goals.”

In addition to being a student, Victoria is also a mother. “The biggest change in my routine,” she says, “is that I have to help my daughter every day with her online lessons. Currently, she is learning how to read and write in Spanish. I really consider this has been a valuable time with her because also I realized she has learned a lot of English at school.”

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