Switching to total or partial online learning can be challenging for anyone involved with the educational system. Principal Ron Proffitt said the students and teachers of ACS have risen to the challenge since classes started on September 8.

“We've had a great kickoff to the school year,” Proffitt said.

Though the look and feel of schooling may have changed, Proffitt said students and teachers seem mostly happy to be back in school.

“It is different to see hallways where students are spread out as they go from class to class. There aren’t as many students in the halls, and there aren’t as many students in the classrooms,” Proffitt said. “That's all different, but we have really, I think, risen to the occasion. Students and teachers alike have really worked hard with each other on those things. I'm very proud of our students. I'm very proud of our teachers and I'm proud of our community and our people.”

To compensate for reduced in person interaction between students and teachers, Proffitt said teachers are available in other ways to make sure students get all the help they need.

“If you're a virtual student, or a hybrid student, your teacher is available with virtual office hours,” Proffitt said. “You can reach out to them to talk to them to get help or assistance in any way, or to ask questions.”

Proffitt said some students have had trouble with online schooling, but that the school is working closely with both these students and the county to resolve any such problems.

“I think for the most part, we are having a very positive start,” Proffitt said. “If there are any issues, I would welcome anybody to reach out to us so we can help them.”

Proffitt said the school has adopted the slogan “together we will.” He said both students and staff will need to work together to adapt to new circumstances, and that so far he thinks they have.

“I think flexibility is a key word,” Proffitt said.

Proffitt said teachers have been working with each other to find the best ways to keep their students engaged both online and in the classroom, and have been meeting via Zoom with other teachers throughout the county to share ideas. Proffitt also praised the school’s administrative and janitorial staffs for their roles in making sure schooling under the pandemic runs smoothly.

“I think we’re already doing a pretty good job,” Proffitt said. “But I think it will continue to improve.”