Right now the only thing on anyone’s mind is the newest strain of coronavirus. How it’s affecting our community, economy and other nations around the world has taken over every news station and permeated every home. While schools have been canceled, some businesses close, films and television have been put on hiatus and quarantines are being instated; it’s a lot to take in. Maybe the way the media and internet has framed the pandemic is also part of the problem, undermining the mostly high survival rate, favoring to talk about how contagious the virus is.
Being a senior in high school puts my peers and me in between two groups: the adults, and the young kids. While we aren’t fully fledged members of the community, still finishing up our secondary education, we are being affected on a different level than younger students. They are also out on a vacation of sorts and will eventually have to take online courses like us, but taking into context all the things the Class of 2020 could be missing that most senior classes have brings it into a different perspective. Not only are our regular studies being affected, but things from senior projects (or senior experience depending on what you do and where you go to school), proms, athletics, clubs and maybe even walking the stage at graduation are being straight up canceled or put into question. Many have made the parallel that the 2020 class was the first group of kids born in the wake of September 11th, and are now exiting our childhoods in the midst of a pandemic. The senior class that was affected by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 had a similar experience, having much of their school year and the experience of being in the 12th grade taken away.
While being home is admittedly fun — getting to relax, catch up on movies or shows, and sleep in is refreshing — most of us feel like we are going to be robbed of our proper send off from high school. Not to mention the quarantine has put a damper on social gatherings and outside interactions, but there are still some people who could care less about that and are still going out in large groups and treating this as a normal vacation (which is obviously a problem). The one hope we have to maybe get back some of the things that have already been canceled, is to just sit by, take the quarantine as a chance to cool down, look out for other members of our community, and to take our hygiene seriously.
While things will eventually go back to normal and this all will calm down, there are still a lot of challenges to face. Besides staying inside and keeping clean, schools are working out the kinks of an online curriculum and parents are scrambling to keep their young children calm while also making sure there are enough supplies available and precautions taken. The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t the end of the world, but it obviously is not something to be taken lightly either. We just have to stick it out and keep our hands clean.
Jacob Iacobucci is a student at Bishop Hendricken High School, Class of 2020