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Articles > Coronavirus June, 03, 2020

Life as a Year 12 Student in 2020

Nadia Kusi-Appiah
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Being a year 12 student during the pandemic has been tough. Last year we had to take on our hardest exams yet – our GCSEs – then we had to adjust to the leap from year 11 to year 12. A step up that no one can really prepare you for. And just as we are beginning to settle into life in year 12, 2020 hits.

Transitioning to A Level Studies

Getting our GCSE results last year was a moment of evolution for many of us. It was a moment that we could break out of our shells and let loose for the first time without the stress of looming exams – I felt like a changed person. I had experienced what my mind and body could be put through and was amazed by my own strength.

Then the reality of starting sixth form happened. I get it, we’re all told that the jump from year 11 to year 12 is a huge step, but I guess you’ll never really know what it feels like until you go through it yourself. No one tells you that you must change your way of thinking, from how you answer questions to how you must apply real-world opinions to your reasoning in daily tasks.

Yes, the amount of subjects we’re studying has drastically reduced, but the reduction in subjects does nothing to reduce the workload. Basically, A Level studies take their toll on you both mentally and physically, and I’ve not yet met a student who disagrees with that.

New Decade – New Problems

So, as I’m adjusting to studying and thinking differently, the almighty 2020 comes along.

A new decade brought the chance to do things differently and grow ourselves and our surroundings – or so we thought! 🙈 To be very honest, the year started pretty weird. We faced the wildfires in Australia, the death of Kobe Bryant, the locust invasion in East Africa, the launching of missiles and disagreements between the United States and Iran… the list goes on! I won’t go through everything, but I will just conclude by saying that we’ve all been through it, and we’re all coping with it differently.

The Impact of COVID-19

You’re probably half-way into this article and wondering: “OK, so where do I, the year 12 student, come in?” Well don’t worry, here’s your floor.

Somewhere in March of this year, the skeleton in the cupboard became globally recognised – COVID-19. The fatal virus that supposedly begun in Wuhan, China in December 2019 became a global threat. I mean we’d all heard about the virus early on and probably thought: “Oh, it’ll die out soon, no stress!” But it didn’t, and it showed us ‘where power lies’.

Many of us year 12 students had only just started picking up on the curriculum and understanding the content when the school closures begun. Some of us applied to firms for work experience, taster days and the likes of such, basically planning for the end of secondary school life and the beginning of adulthood. But coronavirus cancelled all this.

Our summer plans, travel and, let’s face it any real chance to improve our standing in sixth form, has been taken away.

I get that some people say: “mature and organised students would still study and make the best use of their time at home”. But right now, this doesn’t have much meaning. It doesn’t help the students who are going through struggles which they can’t talk about, or those who use school as an escape.

Next year, we’re meant to write exams and God knows how prepared any of us actually are. It’s a struggle and even though some of us may still try to study or improve ourselves, I for one don’t know how our results will pan out if action isn’t taking to give us some leniency.

This is probably a difficult read but guess what, it is reality! I just want others to know that you are all doing great because it is hard.


Read more

If you liked reading this, we’d also recommend reading: ‘The Highs and Lows of Living in Lockdown’ written by year 12 student Rahmath Mohammed Marjan.

Or if you’d like advice on how to relieve stress or be productive in lockdown we’d also recommend:

And if you’d like to submit your own article, simply email editor@youthsight.com.

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  1. Amiko

    This is an excellent example of elegant and effective writing, which is clearly communicated by a young wordsmith. I enjoyed reading it. Keep soaring, Nadia. Well done!

  2. Michael Akafia

    This is an elegantly written piece. It’s a witty write-up by a good wordsmith. Keep soaring, Nadia!!

  3. Panyin Kesse

    That was an excellent piece. You really captured the essence of the current situation. Life will always have its ups and downs but we have to persevere through it.

  4. DonDee

    Well broken down Nadia ! …. just as you settle into the noises of a new level of studying, you are forced into a silent world by this pandemic. I enjoyed reading this article; keep it up young lady !

  5. Vic

    I totally agree. I was just beginning to feel like I understood what was happening in terms of the work, and then everything changes. I am in a fortunate position in terms of the amount of help I am getting from school, but I am worried about the impact my mental health is going to potentially have next year, and have been regularly losing sleep due to not knowing how exams are going to work next year – it seems crazy to imagine sitting the usual exams in a crowded hall this time next year, especially as some people may have missed something like a third of the course. I wish there was some way of having some certainty in terms of next years exams – if they could just say that they are considering doing things more coursework based, or with a similar system as this year, it would enable me to actually work at the things that are going to be necessary, and stop wondering if it is all pointless.

  6. Mariam McBain

    Excellent write up , The covid 19 has brought a big impact on the education of students having analysed the positives and negatives of virtual learning , From my perspective, the negatives out ways the positives as I have two young kids learning from home . Like you mentioned some students use school as their place of escape and being home would trigger all sorts of anxiety. In all we have to keep positive and make use of the tools we have . Great article !

  7. Nanayaw

    Great piece! One fine young lady’s description of her experiences

  8. Amoabee

    I can only imagine how difficult studying in such an uncertain environment can be. Keep it up though. You’ve got this.

  9. Kwame

    I think the writer hit the nail on it head, we are assuming we all have equal opportunities at home to study. I love this article

  10. Bishop William

    You are a brilliant young lady and a gifted writer. May God bless you abundantly.

  11. Henry Gregory Baffo

    I think…That is a beautiful piece Nadia. Keep doing what u do best and believe in your dreams.

  12. Fashe

    I think this is an excellent piece. Great job!!!

  13. Francis

    Fantastic read and a great insight from you. Sometimes letting the world know how you are feeling helps others too, as they realize we not alone.

  14. Kwame boateng

    She is brilliant, keep writing

  15. Michael Akafia

    This is a well-written analytical piece. I enjoyed reading it. Keep soaring, Nadia. All the best as you prepare for your “A” levels.

  16. Daniel Sam

    I think it’s Brilliant piece of writing,Couldn’t have been expressed in more succinct language,Well Done ✅

  17. Autochecker

    I think…great read. Very eloquent for a year 12 student

  18. Dominic Obeng

    I think…this is an amazing job.

  19. Autochecker

    Awesome . I really enjoyed the read. Very eloquent for a year 12 student. Keep it up Nadia

  20. Name kg

    I think…fantastic write up

  21. Kwame

    Interesting read. Will love to read more from you. Keep writing.