Staying Safe But Missing Out

By: Anushka Thakker

When the mass emails were sent out by Norm Enfield, Superintendent of Schools, on Friday, March 13th, it was like we’d struck gold. My friends and I were already together, in the living room of one of their houses. We’d left school early that day because, well, it was a Friday and we’re seniors and we were “sick and tired” of being in class especially after a rough week filled with tests and projects. To us, the two upcoming weeks of no school seemed like they were going to be the spring break we thought we deserved for working so hard. We thought we were going to hang out everyday, get food, watch movies, and just overall finally get a chance to relax instead of worrying about our performance at school.


It’s obvious now, looking back at that moment and remembering how we all felt, that we should’ve prepared for worse. Because that’s exactly what happened. It got worse. Two weeks turned into three, which turned into a month and a half, which turned into cancelling prom and graduation and having seniors pick up their cap and gowns in their own cars, isolated and unable to spend the last moments of their K-12 education with their peers like they were supposed to. 


Prom was supposed to be the one magical night of stress-free fun. A chance to get dressed up with my closest friends, reminisce on our four years at the same school, and have fun with everyone in my senior class. Many seniors this year didn’t get a senior prom, an experience so universal and so treasured that many people recall their senior prom as being the best part of their high school experience.


And graduation. Graduation is the one moment that every student, no matter what grade level, dreams about. Ever since the “mini” graduation I had in Kindergarten, I’ve been dreaming about walking the big stage in my red cap and gown and shaking my principal’s hand and receiving my diploma. It’s supposed to be a celebration of our hard work, our endless nights of no sleep and missed parties, and a chance to see my entire senior class together one last time before we part ways. It was supposed to be a chance to wish everyone goodbye as they start a completely new chapter of their lives, whether in college or serving the country or entering the workforce. Many seniors this year will also not be receiving the graduation experience they worked so hard to earn. A virtual graduation just wouldn’t have cut it, it’s not as sentimental and very impersonal. With not much time left until the end of May, the only thing left to do is hope the current situation improves itself and the class of 2020 is able to experience what they deserve to.