Covid 19s’ Impact

Aliyah Moua, Reporter

The pandemic has definitely made an impact on the D.C. Everest School District. Students thought the pandemic was going to be a longer version of spring break, but it turns out that they would not be back until fall. 

Covid-19 was a big surprise that messed with everyone, including the class of 2020 at D.C. Everest. The class of 2020 never got to finish what they started due to this global pandemic, and it was a devastation. All together, Covid-19 has made a big impact on the school district, teachers, and students. 

Going back to school in the fall of 2020, students had the option to do in-person or virtual learning known as EVA (Everest Virtual Academy). Most students chose to do in-person, and some did online learning. It all depended on the student and what their family chose to do for them. 

For the students who did EVA, all their school work was done online and at home. EVA teachers tried their best to help their students online. Before a student took their test they would have an online call with them and check if they understood what they had learned. Former EVA student Anna Chang, said that she has done it for two years and that she had taught herself most of her learning. Even though the students were teaching themselves independently without a teacher in front of them, they were always there to assist them remotely. Overall, EVA was more self-reliant and separate. 

Former EVA student Anna Chang said, “I don’t prefer EVA, it was much harder and it was more about self teaching yourself. In general, I thought that it was unorganized”.

For in-person, grades were separated into cohorts and that made the students more diverse. A days and B days determined what days a student would stay home or go to school. Cohorts were a bit complicated for the students, but knowing that it was going to be like this they were going to adjust to it.  

Starting off with only having two days of school in-person definitely felt very unusual for the students, half of their classmates were missing and the halls felt so empty.  No one really used their lockers during the school year, and everyone carried around their backpacks. Even though students only went to school twice a week, they had Fridays off also. Many of the students liked flexible Fridays. It was either a Friday where a student could come in and get help, or it was already the weekend for them if a teacher didn’t request them. Students called it a three day weekend and they seem to have really enjoyed it. 

The year was not normal at all due to Covid and all the social distancing that happened, but future aspects were still undetermined. Social distancing was brought up a lot during the times in school, and all the students were to keep their distance from teachers and friends at least 5 feet for most times.

Current juniors and sophomores have experienced their cohort year at D.C. Everest Junior High, meaning they had different restrictions than the high school. The junior high had certain groups called houses where you were grouped with those certain people for the year, so either way the students were well contained within each other. Also, students could not walk the halls like they used to before Covid, and if they did, the teachers would tell them to go to class right away.  

During lunch hours, tables had stickers on seats to see where students could sit and there was a limit to how many kids could sit at a table. Usually, this was the time to communicate and talk to friends from other classes and houses. 

Former junior Madalyn Bates said, “Even lunch sucked because we couldn’t sit with friends”.

Students’ job was to stay within their houses and follow social distancing rules.

Current seniors experienced their first year of high school in cohorts’ too. However, the high school had different restrictions. Some teachers would let their students leave early if they were done with their work, and it was easy to skip class because the teacher did not know whether a student was sick or not. The high school did enforce the covid restrictions, but it was less strict and the kids were more separated. 

In both the Junior and Senior high school, there were certain directions in which the hallways the students could walk and what stairs could be used. Most students did not like this and wanted to have a say about this, but they knew that there wouldn’t be a change due to the covid restrictions. 

Covid-19 rates would go up everyday, and some students would be gone due to quarantining, meaning that they would miss class and try to make up homework for those days. It was bad enough that some students had to work from home and not learn in person. 

Having to wear a mask was another mandatory rule. All the students, teachers, and staff wore them, and it was quite a political topic. Some students said  that it was quite effective and some found it useless. Either way everyone in the Junior High and High School had to wear them. Even sometimes the mask would hurt people’s ears and students who had glasses struggled a lot with it too.

“My glasses would fog up every single day,” said senior Camden Barwick. 

Now restrictions students had are lifted and it is optional to wear a mask. The students can use the staircases and they can be close to each other without the social distancing. Weekdays are back to normal and no more three day weekends sadly, but it was nice while it lasted. 

During the cohort year, students normalized the A days and B days, masking, and social distancing and now they are expected to adjust right away to a normal school year. Going back to a normal school year felt challenging. There was more learning and more work that was put into students’ classes, which was not bad but it felt like there was so much to do overall. With sports after school too, sometimes it was mentally and physically tiring. It seems like there was not enough time to do what a student needed to do in their day with all their homework, sports and maybe jobs too. The days felt like a cycle over and over, and it just felt like so much on a student’s plate and no break in between. In general, it wasn’t easy for the students to come back on a full school schedule and it was interesting to see how students would adjust.  

Now in the new school year of 2022-2023, students look back at Covid now and think that the last two years had a wild ride.