Written by Sydney Spexarth, 10th grade student at Sora
All of my life I have gone to public school. I have never thought about switching to homeschooling, because I love my friends and teachers. On another hand, public school can be very stressful and overwhelming. You work at their pace and their schedule. For me, it’s hard to find where I am at in all that. I love my education and I dream of doing big things because of it, so I want to excel in education.
A year ago, my uncle wanted to start a virtual, project-based school called Sora with some colleagues from Georgia Tech. He wanted me to join his online school instead of going to my public school. However, I thought I would lose everything I loved about my school if I did, so I decided to not join Sora at the time.
In the beginning of March, my school had to shut down because of COVID-19. When my school shut down, I didn’t have a time frame of when I had to do my assignments. All my assignments just had deadlines sometime the day they were due, which meant I could sleep as late as I wanted because I didn’t have to meet with teachers or students. This became a problem because I was staying up very late playing video games, and waking up extremely late in the day.
Around this time, my uncle started a new trial program for students thinking about doing Sora. I agreed to try it because I needed that structure. Without going to school, I didn’t do much besides play video games and get my nights and days mixed up. I needed structure to be more productive. I agreed and started my trial on Monday, March 23.
Of course I had first day jitters, but it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be. I got paired with another trial student to do a project at the end of the program. We got to do the project on whatever we wanted, so we chose something we had in common: gaming. The student and I decided we wanted to figure out how marketing in the gaming industry works. We both knew a little about the subject, but wanted to get a better understanding of it. The other trial student and I hit it off well! We attended a meeting with the full time students of Sora, and every one of them were so welcoming and happy we were there. We met with the counselor and teachers later on, and they were also extremely helpful and welcoming. I immediately knew Sora was a fit.
I’ve been going to Sora part time for a month now, and I’ve never been happier with my education. I’ve had the opportunity to work more on my writing, and I’m currently working on a psychology project on OCD with the Humanities teacher, Michael. I’m benefitting the rest of my sophomore year while also preparing for college and the real world. Even though I’m doing Sora, I’m still able to keep in contact with the public school friends and teachers that I love. I’m working at my pace, and I’m not getting as stressed out as I was before.