On December 20th, students returned to school after two days on zoom only to be sent back home. Monday morning all students waited on the patio for their COVID test results, expecting to go back to in-person learning. However, by the third period, all classes were sent to the cafeteria and informed that they would be on zoom until the end of the week. The number of cases in the school had reached a critical percentage, and the school decided that students were the safest at home. The student body experienced a mixed reaction to the news of going back to online learning. Some students were excited and surprised about their week of schooling from home. Although their hearts were out to the students and teachers who were sick, they felt as though they needed this break from rigorous weeks of in-person learning.
“I feel like a lot of the students needed this zoom break,” said Isabella Lazar (9th). “Of course, it is still school, but online learning is much more chill.”
Other students were dreading this change to zoom, having felt that they had enough of it in the last two years. Many prefer in-person learning for they feel that lessons are much more engaging when done in a classroom. Some experience difficulty concentrating on their work when staring at a computer that can access messages to chat with friends or games to play when they are bored.
“I think going on zoom was the safest thing to do, but I would definitely rather go to school in person,” said Emily Roller (11th). “It’s easier to learn in person, and there are fewer distractions. I also think that the environment at school is better for learning than at home.”
Many students also miss the social aspect of in-person schooling. Meeting with teachers and friends is an important part of school days, and on zoom, students feel they miss out on this much-needed interaction. Doing zoom at home can get lonely, and it is difficult for students to get through the day without their peers by their side.
“I miss seeing my friends throughout the day and having basketball games and practices,” said Sophie Lurie (10th). “Going on zoom takes all of that away.”
Although students were informed of the week on zoom on Monday, the administration told them more information would be posted later on in the week. On Wednesday, December 22nd, the school sent an email updating students and families. They decided to cancel classes on Friday for all divisions, whether they were already on zoom or still in person. Too many faculty members from the entire school were affected, and because of the increased positive rates, there were not enough staff members to continue classes. The students are happy about the cancellation of school but also hope that everyone gets better soon.
The email also updated the school that moving forward we will have to wear masks whenever we start in-person learning to protect the virus from spreading. The students were very surprised and upset because it makes it much more difficult to learn while wearing masks.
“I don’t think anyone really enjoys wearing masks,” said David Saka (11th). “They are pretty uncomfortable and make it hard to focus in class.”
In all, the upsurge of corona cases has led the school to make many new adjustments in our safety procedure. The final update email was sent out on Friday, notifying students and faculty that in-person learning will resume on Monday morning. We hope that everyone stays safe during this uptick of COVID cases.
By: Abby Lazar and Sara Reinberg (11th)