By: Sanjana Tummala
Students talk about going virtual in the hallways between class periods, in the bustling halls of Garnet Valley High School. As neighboring schools are quickly answering their wishes, Garnet Valley remains open, running at full capacity each day. Statistically, looking at trends in cases of COVID-19, we can see a steady increase in cases with a current average of 20,497 cases a day in Pennsylvania, as opposed to December 26, which had an average of 9,176. Over winter break, students traveled around the country, outside even, and as school opens back up this week, empty desks remain in every class for those infected. We all hold our breath to see those numbers released by Mr. Brandt, principal, at the end of each school day.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Garnet Valley had gone almost entirely virtual in the year 2020-2021. Students returning to school this year had trouble adjusting to the difficulty and stress of in-person classes, and opt to go virtual to take their tests in the comfort of their homes. As midterm season comes up in a few weeks, students hope that midterms will get canceled if Garnet Valley goes virtual, but no such future is being indicated by school officials.
The rise of cases, however, also means another thing to worry about: senior graduation. As a senior, myself, I can say that I am terrified of graduating virtually, as the Class of 2020 had. The idea of receiving a diploma in the mail, and saying goodbye to my classmates through a screen after eighteen years together is saddening at the moment, and most definitely will be devastating at the time. So while seniors are hoping that Garnet Valley does go virtual with the rest of the school, I can surely speak for my class when I say that we hope cases decrease by June, and we can have successful graduation as the Class of 2022.