Updates on COVID-19 Policies

Addison DiGuglielmo, Staff Writer

The school year is about one-fourth of the way through. However, the COVID regulations that started at the beginning of this year are still in place. Masks are required to be worn at all times indoors unless drinking or eating. At lunch, students are not supposed to be talking while their masks are down. Overall, these rules have worked and kept most students from catching the virus. However, is teaching and learning as effective with these mandates in place? Xuedan Yang, the Upper School Chinese teacher shares her thoughts about how masks have affected her teaching saying, “In Chinese, we use different tones, and with masks on it is hard to understand or critique a student’s pronunciation especially in words that are harder to pronounce.” The mask mandate at school should definitely stay to protect students from getting sick, but it can not be effective in keeping us safe if people will not follow it and leave their masks down when they are not eating. “I find myself asking students to put back on their masks constantly, and I think many other teachers have the same struggle,” said Mrs. Yang. 


In addition to mask struggles many students feel like they missed out on certain units they are expected to know and understand in their classes but missed out on the full understanding of the lesson over zoom because a good portion of last year was online.. “Sometimes in a class teachers will ask about a unit we were supposed to have last year but didn’t have time to do, it can be frustrating and confusing,” said Anya Agarwal, class of 2025. Teachers also missed out on lots of preparation time and had to cut out units altogether in the past few years leaving many students with an incomplete understanding of their past subjects. A good way to overcome this confusion is to be vocal with teachers about what we have learned and what was missed out on.


As previously mentioned, at lunch, students are required to wear a mask at all times unless eating or drinking. This can make the most exciting part of the school day less fun, especially not being able to socialize with friends and have conversations. One way to avoid this is by sitting outside, but with colder weather coming this is no longer an option that many students are willing to pursue. “I used to eat lunch outside, but it has gotten too cold,” said Anya Agarwal, class of ‘25,” My friends and I had to find somewhere else to sit.”  


Overall, there have been very few cases of COVID the whole school year and we have been able to stay in school all year. For this to continue, every student needs to make sure they are keeping their masks on and staying home when they may have symptoms. Everyone’s mask falls down sometimes, it happens. But the most important part is pulling it back up to keep everyone safe.