To return or not to return, that is the question


The electronic marquee in the EHS cafeteria stands ready to greet students of all grade levels tomorrow for the first time in 14 months.

As everyone knows by now, with the state pushing all schools to fully reopen, EHS students have the choice of going back to school for the next few weeks. Today, May 10, freshman returned for a day of orientation.  Tomorrow, May 11, all grades will be able to return to the building for a full school day for the first time since March 13, 2020. 

Going back to school during a pandemic is a big decision. Most students have already made up their mind if they want to go back or not. Many students have said it’s their parent’s decision, not theirs.

In our interviews, we found that many students are hesitant about going back.  Students are anxious to know if it will be safe, as well as if it is really worth it to go back to school when it’s so late into the year already. Many students, especially seniors, just want to get school over with. Overall a lot of people do not plan on going back to in-person learning. 

“No, I don’t plan on returning because I feel as though there’s no point in returning for the last month of school,”  junior Amanda Alonzo said. “We’ve already been online for so long, might as well finish the year like this and then return next year.”

Alonzo decided to stay home and continue online learning because she is unsure if going back to school will truly be safe. As she points out, if people go back to school it will most likely be a mess.

“There’s also the fact that I feel like it’s still not safe enough to go back to school yet,” Alonzo said. “We occasionally get school emails saying that students have gotten Covid at the school even though there are barely any kids there. Now imagine if all of us went into high school. There would be kids who wouldn’t wear masks and others who wouldn’t social distance. I just feel like it would still be kind of risky.”

“I’m not going back because there’s no point to go back for three weeks and the EHS system is a mess,” senior Matthew Chaves said.

“I didn’t even get to finish my freshman year at school why would I want to go back for 3 more weeks,” said sophomore Kelita Pinto.

“I’m not going back, I haven’t gotten up for school is over a year, I’m not going to start now just for three weeks,” senior Adrian Figeroa said.

“I don’t want to go back because it just won’t feel the same,” said senior Diana Rodrigues.

“I’m gonna stay remote rather than go back to in-person learning mainly because I enjoy staying remote and we are going back for only a couple of weeks so I don’t think it’s worth it,” freshman Blake Harden said.  

At the same time, we also spoke to several students who have decided that in-person learning is the best option for them and that now is a good time to start.

“Finally we can go back,” freshman John Gonzales said.  “I’m tired of always staying home bored on a computer screen. We’re still going to be on a computer screen in school, but it’s better than being at home.” 

“I’m going back,” freshman Diego Orellanna said. “Some of my friends aren’t, so it might not be as fun, but I’m still excited to go back. Hopefully we will be able to use gym equipment like a basketball in the gym. But I don’t know if we will because we are not allowed to share equipment. It would also be good if we could bring in our own basketballs, but it’s a low chance that it will be allowed.”

“I’m ready to graduate and get out of there,” senior Smayline Mendes said. “I’ll be returning to school but only because I feel as though it’ll be better for me to pass.” 

“I’m actually going to be there and there’s going to be people there to force me to do what I need to do. There’s also going to be people there doing their work which will motivate me to do mine,” Mendes said. “It’s whatever, I’m there for my work, it’s school.” 

“Nope I have no worries, I feel like everyone needs to keep their masks on. If everyone goes to class and does what they’re supposed to do, everything will be safe,” Mendes said. “But I’m focused and ready to get to school and get my grades back on track.”