While much of the focus in May 2020 has been on the TSCS graduating class and other graduating classes around the country, it’s also a highlight of any student’s school years to transition from middle school to high school and many of these students have faced the same challenges as high school students with coronavirus-related distance learning. We recently caught up with TSCS eighth grade graduate Braleigh Casey, who is making that transition into high school during the next school year to find out what challenges she’s been facing and what she is looking forward to most.

TSCS: How long have you been at Soulsville, in what grade did you start?

BC: My journey at Soulsville began in 2017. I started in 6th grade and have been attending for 3 years.

TSCS: Is Soulsville different from the elementary school you attended and how?

BC: Soulsville is different from the elementary school I attended. The difference is that Soulsville has a stricter uniform policy whereas everyone has to look the same and they are all work and minimum play.

TSCS: What are your favorite subjects and why are you interested in them?

BC: My favorite subject is Social Studies. I am interested in Social Studies because I enjoy learning about history, with emphasis on Black History. I like learning about my ancestors. 

TSCS: How have your teachers at Soulsville helped you through middle school and what does that mean to you?

BC: My teachers at Soulsville have helped me numerous times. All of my teachers have been tremendously supportive of me, and have encouraged me to do better and become the best version of me. This means a lot because they see potential in me.

TSCS: Why are you now looking forward to attending high school at Soulsville and what do you hope to achieve?

BC: I am looking forward to high school at Soulsville because it is a great place and there are many opportunities to expose myself to things that will be useful in the future.

TSCS: Are you thinking yet about what college you’d like to attend and what you would like to do as a profession?

BC: I do have in mind colleges that I would like to attend, such as Jackson State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Howard University to name a few. As my profession I want to become a Neurosurgeon. 

TSCS: How has distance learning been for you since the school had to close because of the coronavirus?

BC: Distance Learning has been both a blessing and a curse. Although I was able to complete all of my assignments on time with passing grades, it was a struggle managing time and staying focused.  

TSCS: What have been your biggest challenges and how have you overcome them?

BC: My biggest challenges were completing the work on time with several distractions, understanding new material without the traditional teaching, and helping others who didn’t understand. I overcame these obstacles by creating a schedule for the day, asking for help, and searching for videos or notes to help me better understand the work so that I can pass the knowledge onto others.

TSCS: How has the Soulsville staff been helping you through distance learning?

BC: The Soulsville staff has been sending activities to make Distance Learning fun, teachers have been really helpful with reaching out to those who didn’t quite understand the assignments and the counselor sent videos and articles to help students cope with stress, anxiety, and other emotions that have come about during these times.

TSCS: What are the main lessons you have learned during the coronavirus crisis and what do you think are your biggest accomplishments in dealing with it.

BC: The main lessons that I have learned during this crisis is that there is a lot of responsibility with learning independently such as managing your time and being organized. I have accomplished these things by creating an agenda and following it daily.