Covid-19 Class of 2021

Lilly Greenshields, Columnist

On March 13th of 2020 during my 4th period class that I attended at the Wilson Talent Center my junior year, all my friends and I were so excited we were getting 2 weeks off of school because of some virus going around that our teachers explained as “no worse than the flu.” Now, in March of 2021, my education has been at an all time low. 

Nationwide schools have been shut down for nearly a year as Covid cases rose and began to get worse than ever. When I was informed that schools were shutting down I was excited as I ever have been. At the end of my junior year slowly starting to catch a case of senioritis, the two weeks off were exactly what I needed. 

Quickly the two weeks turned into a month, and then turned into that we would be returning next year. Teachers just learned how to teach online, not taking much seriously as it was the end of the year and all of this was still new. 

Grades began dropping but not enough to notice a big change, all we knew was that summer had come early. 

Once summer of 2019 hit, news of Covid putting people on ventilators and even taking their lives began to surface. Restaurants and shopping centers closing, enforcing the new mask mandate. Everything was changing and many had differing opinions. Some students and parents brush off the seriousness of the situation and put it to the side while others not leaving their houses for weeks at a time. 

In July of 2020, Michigan averaged around 128 deaths every 7 day period. As the government began to look closely at these numbers and the current state of our world, all across the US the decision was made we would not be returning to school for fall of 2020. 

Once students began school online, there was a significant drop in grades and mental health. With the typical time span off of school for the summer being 3 months, typically students are expected to come back to school retaining 75% of the information they had learned the year previous. 

However, this year studies show that students returning online have only retained 45-50% of the knowledge they learned the year previous. Many argue that zoom calls make it easy for students to be lazy and not participate in class as they can do so from their bed or wherever they please. 

Recently, 90% of students reported that since they have been online they receive less class time to learn, however nearly double the amount of homework they had previously had. Poor attendance and dropout rates have increased by 63% from the year 2015 to 2020. 

Not only has Covid affected grades, it has had a large impact on mental health for students as well. As they are not able to get the social interaction they are used to daily at school, some of the most significant moments they should experience, especially for seniors, have been taken away from them. 

As juniors in 2020 did not receive a prom 2 years in a row, no senior year at the school, and may not even have a proper graduation. This has made students more unmotivated than ever.

Overall, Covid has negatively impacted students’ education all around the world. Learning less with more work, little to no social interaction, and stuck in the house all day while simultaneously taking the lives of innocent people. Here’s to our senior year courtesy of Covid.