Poll and online debate on the experience of distance learning


What is the opinion of secondary school students about distance learning and the way it has been implemented since the 10th of March 2020, when schools were closed due to Covid-19? What do they think? How do they feel? What are their teachers impressions? What kind of difficulties did they all face? What were their limitations and their successes? 

InArt12, following a proposal made by its Youth Advisory Groups, decided to organise a poll, and following this, an online debate on this subject, with the participation of secondary school students and teachers from all over Greece.

The poll took place between 28.4. and 10.5.2020. Here you can see a detailed report and analysis of all the answers (in Greek). Below you can find a selection of its key findings.

It is important to stress that the content of the poll was formed with the contribution of the members of two Youth Advisory Groups of InArt12 in Athens and Thessaloniki, consisting of young persons aged 15 to 25, who exchanged their ideas and proposals online. The poll was promoted via social media and was answered anonymously.


In total there were 752 valid answers to the questionnaire:

  • 402 (53,5%) answered by students (165 attending gymnasium and 237 lyceum)
  • 350 (46,5%) by teachers.

Out of them:

  • 39,5% lived in Athens or its suberbs
  • 16,6% in Thessaloniki 
  • 43,9% in other areas of the country (the percentages are rather relevant to the residence statistics of the general population).
The responses show that both students and teachers have mixed opinions and feelings about the implementation of distance learning during the period of schools closure. However, it was clear that the majority (75%) of them answered that they believe that dinstance learning was far behind teaching in the classroom, as teaching needs personal close contact.
The majority of answerers agreed that:
  • "During this period I miss personal communication with students of my school" (80%),
  • "I know that distance learning left out some students who did not have the necessary technical means" (78,5%),
  • "When the schools open again, we need to move away from frontal teaching and work more collaboratively as a team" (75%).
If we compare the replies of different categories, we observe that:
  • gymnasium students faced less difficulties in attending distance learning lessons. Only 9,7% of them said that they faced serious difficulties, comparing to the nearly double percentage of lyceum students (18,1%) while 34,8 of the teachers answered that they faced serious difficulties in planning their lessons.
  • 70% of the teachers agreed that "distance learning gave the opportunity to some teachers to become more resourceful", while only 45,8% lyceum students and 55,5% of gymnasium students agreed with this.
  • 55% of gymnasium students, 47,7 of lyceum students and 76% of teachers agreed with the phrase "During this period I missed school".
  • 50,6% of gymnasium students, 59,7% of lyceum students and only 42% of teachers agree with the rather pessimistic attitude and the phrase "When schools reopen, it is most probable that we return to the situation as it was before, the system cannot change easily ".

Very interesting were the answers to the (3) open questions of the poll, where it is demonstrated what children and teachers missed most during this period, as well as their difficulties, their concerns, thoughts, as well as the "lessons" that they have taken during guarantine.

It is pointed out that the poll is not a scientifc research and that its findings are only mere indicators of attitudes and an opportunity for reflection.

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