- Ellie Anderson, reporter
A Year of Covid-19
In the past year,“normal” has become a glorified term that many people can picture, but not remember what it feels like. East High’s normal is crowded hallways and consistent activities and events.
Now, a year from the last time there was any sense of normalcy, the thought of crowded hallways and large school gatherings is weird and scary. March 2020 is associated with the time when the world changed. Students left for spring break and they did not return. It is now March 2021 and students are just now returning to the building.
On March 17, 2020 it was announced that kids would not be returning to in-person school and the rest of the school year would be carried out online. For many students, what was supposed to be a week long spring break, turned into a six month long summer.
March, April and May of last year were spent in lockdown. People rushed to buy masks and the country went through toilet paper shortages. All across the United States and the world, people were in a frenzy due to the rapid shift and the widely spreading virus.
Sedgwick County placed a mandatory mask mandate in July. The shut down that happened in months prior was supposed to give a chance for a quick recovery from the virus. But as more people got sick, the idea of going back to normal seemed almost impossible.
By the time school was scheduled to start in August, COVID numbers were higher than ever which caused school to get pushed back by a month and strictly online learning for the first semester. Even teachers were advised to teach at home for a few weeks.
Then as January 2021 rolled around and the number had gone down, the school board voted to send secondary kids back to school in small amounts.
Fortunately, a vaccine has finally been released to the public and teachers are some of the priority people to get vaccinated. For the first time in a year, the COVID cases are low and a sense of normalcy has been put in action.
With a mask mandate in place, sanitation required and the best attempt at social distancing, students are being offered the part of school that was taken away from them last year.
Corona Virus has changed the world in a way that no one ever expected it would. It showed people the value of things that they took for granted; hugs, handshakes, seeing grandparents or extended family, hanging out in a group of people, sitting down in a restaurant, traveling, sharing items.
As hard as it has been for everyone, the phrase “We’re all in this together” has really become the world’s motto. As of right now, normal looks as close as ever and hopefully soon East can return to crowded hallways and full classrooms.