Is online schooling a solution to stress in schools?

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Stress in school is real. That topic has gained more attention in recent years as students are facing growing academic pressure to meet ever-increasing college admissions standards and stress from time-demanding extracurricular schedules.

With the rise of technology, online schooling has become a popular option for students seeking a flexible and customized educational experience. In this blog post, we will explore how online learning can effectively eliminate a cause of stress and reduce the pressure some young people face in schools.

Student in stress

Reducing student stress with online learning

According to a 2020 study by the American Psychological Association (APA), 49 percent of high school students reported feeling a great deal of stress on a daily basis. That means one in every two students walking the halls of their high school is stressed out. The APA also found that high school students who reported high levels of stress were more likely to report using alcohol, drugs, and cigarettes as a coping mechanism.

Academic stress can sometimes come from the one-size-fits-all model employed by traditional schools. The time flexibility and self-paced nature of online schooling can help alleviate some school stress as well as mitigate other problems that can come from face-to-face interactions with other students, such as bullying.

Everything a student needs for their education can be accessed online, including support systems like school counselors.

One tremendous benefit of online learning is the ability to learn on your time instead of being bound by a school bell schedule. For instance, students in competitive sports may have early morning practices that make a traditional school day more challenging. But having the time to return home and unwind from practice before concentrating on their academic performance reduces stress and makes for a better learning experience.

In addition, online students are not bound by geography and are free to learn from anywhere. This helps eliminate stress for students and families who need to move or travel frequently. For example, Alex Kemp, an ASU Prep Digital student, started his online education due to the pandemic. Today, he loves the flexibility of online education, which allows him to keep up with his school work on his tablet and get good grades while traversing Europe with his family.

Student in stress

Identifying symptoms of student stress

Students may not be able to express their feelings when they experience stress or may dismiss those feelings as normal as they build their self-advocacy and learn to self-regulate. It helps for their families to be on the lookout for symptoms of stress and find ways to support.

The American Psychological Association said feelings of stress in students can appear in the form of physical symptoms such as stomach aches or headaches. These physical issues can be a stress response, so be on the lookout if they are making frequent complaints even after their doctor has given them a clean bill of health. It may be a symptom of stress they feel when they have an upcoming test or when a big project is due.

Because students may not know how to express their feelings regarding stress, they may say things like they feel worried, annoyed, confused, or angry. Be on the lookout for changes in sleep patterns. The CDC recommends eight to 12 hours of sleep per night, depending on the age of the student. Sleeping too much or too little may be one way a student tries to cope with the stress they are facing. Not getting enough sleep can also lead to a stress level increase and make the problem worse. The loss of that needed rest can prevent the body from properly recovering from stressful situations.

Student stressed with parent comforting them

Stress-free education through online schooling

The ability for students to set their own schedule and learn at their own pace in online schooling vs traditional schooling is a tremendous benefit and immediately reduces the stress a student feels in a traditional school.

But the best online schools like ASU Prep Digital realize there are still challenges that students will face on a daily basis, and online learning does not eliminate stress completely. They provide resources like school counselors who can introduce successful habits for students while ensuring they are making academic progress and are getting the most out of their online learning experience.

Self-care is recommended for reducing stress as well, so families are encouraged to make sure their student learns coping skills and are building breaks into their daily schedule. Teaching students about stress management tips like deep breathing exercises, mindfulness techniques, and increasing physical activity can also help them feel less stressed.

Students learning virtually and parent working virtually

Why choose online learning over traditional?

A rigid bell schedule with a fixed curriculum from a traditional school can be much more stressful than the self-paced learning on your own time model of an online school. A common misconception of online learning is that it’s just a student and their computer. But there is a structured support system in place for online students and there is interaction with other students in group projects, peer mentoring programs, and extracurricular student clubs.

Chronic stress can lead to long-term health complications, so any effort to reduce school stress is an investment in future well-being. Helping students avoid the pressure and stress associated with school is a good goal for many families, and exploring online education options can help. Eliminating factors like a fixed schedule and incorporating self-paced learning can lead to more engagement, better retention, and even help students perform as well as or better than peers in face-to-face schooling. It’s a great way for students to get a high-quality education without the associated stress and pressure that comes with a traditional school setting.

Considering online school for your student?

Transferring to online school is easier than many parents think, whether it’s at the beginning or in the middle of the school year. ASU Prep Digital is a great option to consider if you want to move away from homeschooling or public/private school and explore the flexibility and personalization of an online school program.

At ASU Prep Digital we have a team dedicated to helping you navigate the enrollment process. We believe that every child and their family should be able to have an education that is unique and easily accessible.

ASU Prep Digital is an accredited online school program serving students in grades K–12, recognized as Arizona’s #1 Online School by Our unique teaching model supports students from the comfort of their homes with the latest learning technologies and several layers of personalized instruction and coaching.

In addition, our program is a college prep option where online high school and university courses converge, preparing students for college acceptance and encouraging them to start earning credit toward college majors and careers.

We support districts in Arizona, while serving students and schools around the world. To learn more about ASU Prep Digital, please visit our website.

Is online schooling a solution to student stress in schools? FAQs

How does an online school help reduce stress in students?

An online school may shield a student from some of the peer pressure they face on a daily basis in a traditional school setting. They may feel more comfortable in their own home in familiar surroundings and that can reduce the anxiety some students feel. In addition, attending class online eliminates some of the stress associated with being judged or bullied by peers.

Can online schools provide the same level of education as traditional schools?

With the advances in online education, going to school online can provide the same or even better level of education than a student would receive in a traditional brick and mortar school. Face-to-face learning may be preferred by some, but the use of technology is allowing virtual education to be just as rewarding for many students.

What additional resources or support is available for students in an online school?

One of the benefits of online schooling is the ability to tailor curriculum to the interests and learning styles of each student. A school counselor or Learning Success Coach is a great resource for students in an online setting to help them understand what’s required of them and what avenues are available for exploring additional support. They can also help the student with time management skills and setting goals.

Can online schools accommodate students with special needs or learning disabilities?

Most online schools can level the playing field for students with special needs or learning disabilities by allowing them to learn at their own pace. They can also provide additional resources to help students achieve success in the form of specialized tutoring or peer mentoring. Those types of resources can provide an environment where students with special needs can flourish and that sets them up for future success beyond high school.