NHS rolls out its DL plan

Alivia Stonier, Senior Reporter

The Coronavirus is a pandemic that has taken the world by storm. Everyone had to go into lockdown for many months, and schools were closed in early March. Distance Learning began. 

However, it has now been seven months and with that comes the reopening of the new school season. For Connecticut that meant opening on September 3rd  just earlier this month. With such an odd time in different forms of learning being  offered to students, the Greyhound News decided to ask what the student body thinks of this transition here  at Naugatuck High School.

Before getting into what the student body had to say,  here is a breakdown of the different options that students had to discuss with their parents before deciding how to return for this upcoming school year. 

First there is the option to completely do distance learning remotely from home. These students run on a completely different schedule than those who decide to do hybrid for their schooling.  

As for students who decided to go hybrid it is done through cohorting to separate some of the grades in order to avoid contact  tracing as well as different students being sent in on different days by alphabetization.  Despite these methods issues are bound to come up and we experienced our first case of COVID at Naugatuck High School as of last week. 

 Although it was handled quickly it sure put things into perspective as to what could happen and what is to be further expected in the future unfortunately with the world that we are living in right now.

 These students were spoken to before this incident and it is clear that they believed that something like this would occur and we’re prepared for it as seen in these interviews here.

“I think that the reopening of school was inevitable, but of course, like many others, I’m nervous about what will happen in the future and our safety. I trust that if the need arises the right decisions will be made and we will transition into whatever plan/schedule is needed. I feel that all we can do is take necessary precautions and safety measures for ourselves to keep ourselves safe,” said senior Nicole Smith.

These thoughts were echoed by Julie Matthews, another NHS Senior. “Ultimately I knew school was going to reopen either way, with or without hybrid learning. I’m glad students have the choice to go back to the school building and I’m happy they reduced the numbers of students in the building at a time but I’m disappointed the school didn’t check everyone for covid beforehand. I understand maybe there wasn’t enough funding or they thought the risk wasn’t high, either way I feel like it was foolish not to test students. People can have or carry COVID without the symptoms that’s why those precautions are required. I feel like if you’re going to  open the school for hybrid learning you need testing in place too or else it should remain strictly online. Students of all backgrounds with family members at high risk of dying if they get covid. One case alone can put family members at high risk of dying if they get covid. One case alone can kill thousands if not more. in times like these it’s crucial to prepare for the worse and Naugatuck Public Schools haven’t completely prepared for that at all.” 

 It is clear that students feel as though there should have been more going into preparing before coming back in some areas,  with some thinking that students should have received testing before being allowed back into the building,  these are  valid concerns for the student body to have for their safety and the safety of their loved ones as well. With one student calling the execution of everything “a little irresponsible.”

However many students feel it is good to be back and just a difficult adjustment especially for freshman, and a let down for seniors. It is an adjustment for all. 

This is not to say that the school has not been doing a good job such as the principal or the dean’s to ensure that everybody is kept safe and everything is taken care of as quickly as possible in any manner that will keep as many people as possible safe. With teachers also being diligent by not passing out too many papers or making sure everybody is wearing their masks appropriately as they should be and distancing in a safe manner.

 The efforts are highly appreciated as we all want the same end goal. to have as normal of a year as possible and an enjoyable experience. In order to be able to learn in a beneficial way that suits all students in whatever works for their family dynamic and situation this all happened very quickly. 

More will become clearer as the year goes on and we become more equipped to deal with these issues we can only hope for the best as this pandemic is not going away by any means and we wait for a vaccine to manage I think we can all agree that we are grateful to be back in some way shape or form and are all hoping for the best