• Anna McLean

Back to School

One year ago today, I wrote an article about our long-awaited return to school - the beginning of my sophomore year. I started the article with a flashback of the last time we had been in school, March 13th, 2020, and I write to you all now on September 13th, 2021, almost a year and a half from the initial, nationwide shutdown.

Now, I am more than happy to recount that things have changed since returning to school in August of 2020. While we are still required to wear masks, the looming plexiglass and “go this way” stickers do not litter our hallways and classrooms any longer.

Students and staff seem to remain hopeful for the eventual elimination of required mask-wearing. Last year, we asked the question of, “Do you think we’ll have to wear masks next year?” This year, the answer still remains unclear. We have started the year with the face-coverings, but the general consensus is that the need for them may not be as prevalent as the year progresses. Sarah Sevener, a junior at SLHS, says, “Realistically, I recognize that this winter might be rough with COVID-19, but I’m hopeful that by springtime we will not have to wear them anymore.” 9th grade English and AP English Language teacher, Mr. Sinn, also expresses that, “My feeling is that the mask mandate will be lifted as soon as the county and district transmission numbers return to moderate or low status. We are seeing a dramatic surge in cases right now in our area, and so I believe the mask mandate will last a while. But the district seems committed to following the data and the CDC/Health Dept. guidelines, which I agree with. My hope is that, with enough people getting vaccinated and the temporary mask requirements, we can put this behind us and get rid of the masks sooner rather than later. Not sure what that means timewise.”

As for now, let’s stay hopeful that the case numbers in the Spring Lake school district and Ottawa County as a whole begin to decline so that we can stay in person and be able to keep attending sports games, club meetings, and other extracurriculars!

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