Students, teachers unable to sign into first classes of school year

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Photo by Adam Monnette

Zoom was not working for the first period of the first day of school. "Zoom was not working for first period," Edward Kek, junior, said. "It felt weird. There I am, after summer, it's sunny and summer's ending and all that. Then [Zoom] doesn't work and you're like, 'What the heck? Come on school."

Sasha Kek and Adam Monnette

Many students and teachers were unable to login into Zoom meetings for their first class of the 2020-2021 school year yesterday morning.

At 7:51, Zoom acknowledged that users were unable to visit the Zoom website, meetings, or webinars. Although the disruption to scheduled first-period classes surprised many, some students, such as Edward Kek, junior Marketing student, noted that August 24 was the first day of virtual learning for a number of schools and Zoom itself was still largely untested for so much simultaneous use. 

“It makes sense [that Zoom broke down] because you can’t always do a lot of testing beforehand, so it was kind of expected that there would be some problems,” Kek said. “It’s tough to command this e-learning operation, which is probably pretty stressful for the school. There are lots of details that can be left out on the first day and things that can be unforeseen.”

By 10 AM, Zoom had begun deploying fixes, which allowed most students to attend their second-period class, with Kek marking the issue with Zoom as “a minor incident that’s really not that significant,” and therefore did not affect the rest of his first day.

Students were not the only ones who were able to adapt to the situation; while Zoom was down, some teachers such as Jenna Lindholm, Spanish teacher, used other alternatives to have their first-period class.

I decided to use Google Meet as an alternative tech tool,” Lindholm said. “ I posted the link to the meeting on Canvas Announcements, and almost all students were able to work through initial setbacks to meet as a class.”

Due to students “being so flexible and joining the class as if that was the original plan, “ Lindholm thinks that they were able to stay creative and keep on their toes for an unprecedented start to the school year.

If students were unable to join [the Google Meets meeting] for whatever reason, they reached out to me to make sure they had all of the materials that they needed,” Lindholm said. “I also noticed that students were helping their peers, providing additional direction through texts and FaceTime. They demonstrated such a strong sense of community [and] I am so proud of them.”

With virtual learning, Lindholm says that students need to, “stay creative, [as] we are all navigating unchartered territories together and may need to experiment with the ways that we share resources and connect with each other.”

At 12:10 yesterday, Zoom stated that they have resolved the issue, and service is fully restored.