The impacts of COVID-19 in high schools

The impacts of COVID-19 in high schools

COVID-19 has devastated millions of people around the world and affected many businesses and schools. Now Jefferson County has opted to let students do a hybrid learning schedule, cases are rising within schools.

With cases of COVID-19 rising in Jeffco to just about 40 new cases a day on average, some schools have chosen to go fully remote for short periods of time to do a deep cleaning. With cases also rising by hundreds of thousands a day in the United States, many school districts in Colorado have gone fully remote. 

The impacts of COVID-19 also have an effect on school sports. At the tail end of A-West’s cross country team’s season, a runner on the team contracted the virus. The runner’s teammates had to quarantine for two weeks before being able to return back to school. A teammate of the runner who contracted COVID-19, Caleb Luyk, a sophomore at A-West, explained his experience in quarantine.

You just have to stay home and not come in contact with anyone other than your family. It is pretty boring,” explains Luyk. 

Luyk also stated that he is not very worried about the virus personally, and says that he will adapt to whatever happens. Luyk also explained the difficulties of the hybrid system that some students have opted to do.

“It has just made it harder to learn and understand things,” expresses Luyk.

Across town at Ralston Valley High School, the school had to shut down for a week because of rising COVID-19 cases and has now returned to hybrid learning as of November 6th. As of November 18th, Ralston Valley has had 39 confirmed cases, with 24 active cases and 15 eligible to return cases. Arvada West’s numbers are a little lower in every category with 31 confirmed cases, 12 active cases, and 19 eligible to return cases.

Jackson Spiwak is a student at Ralston Valley who prefers in-school learning but understands that it is safest to stay home during COVID-19.

“I prefer in-school learning because it’s easier for me to focus. However, during these times I would rather be at home because I am worried about my family,” states Spiwak.

Spiwak, a lacrosse player, also states that because of COVID-19 his lacrosse practices are very different, saying that he and his teammates socially distance as much as possible and wear masks during their weight lifting.

Contrary to Luyk, Spiwak has worries about the virus.

“My concern has grown because people do not seem to be taking this seriously. I do think most schools will close as COVID-19 cases continue to climb,” Spiwak states.

Since the interviews with Luyk and Spiwak were conducted on November 6th and 9th, Jeffco announced on November 12th that they have decided to go fully remote for the rest of the first semester. As of November 18th, Jeffco is still planning on going back to a hybrid school schedule for the second semester.