First Week Marks Slight Return to Normalcy

Students convey mixed opinions about the return of the full school day


photo by Mason Kane

Students wait in cafeteria prior to the beginning of the school day on August 12.

Tyler Chrenka, Editor-in-Chief

Folders, flashcards and face masks marked the beginning of another school year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but despite the delta variant augmenting cases across the country, school appears to be back to normal.

Except for requiring face masks during the school day, many aspects of a non-COVID school year have returned. Dismissal times are back to 1:50 p.m., students have returned to eating lunch and class times are once again 54 minutes long. 

Though the schedule’s return to normalcy was widely approved by district parents, 11th grader Alexis Trimm misses the former COVID-schedule. 

“With the 7:20-1:50 schedule, I am always more tired, and it feels like I am always running out of time,” Trimm said. “I miss last year’s schedule of half days since I could go spend time with friends, go to practices and still have time for schoolwork.”

The 2020 school year’s schedule was modified to prevent the spread of COVID-19. It took two hours out of the day by cutting class periods down to 40 minutes long and getting rid of the lunch break. 

Now that lunch has returned, many students feel anxious. 10th grader Jacob McKey says that the ongoing pandemic has only lowered people’s comfortability with the lunch process, which is stressful without the pandemic. 

“Lunch was a huge change from what I knew at previous schools. It feels like too many people are in one place, and it has taken some getting used to,” McKey said. “I feel like [COVID-19] has for sure [worsened anxiety at lunch] considering it is a huge amount of people all with their masks off.”

McKey, like every other 10th grader, is experiencing EHS lunch for the first time due to last year’s modified schedule. 

10th graders are also experiencing 54 minute class periods for the first time. Elise Burke misses the 40 minute class periods, but she also thinks that the 54 minutes allows for more material to be covered in class. 

“When the class periods were not 54 minutes, I definitely liked it more,” Burke said. “Although I think that 54 minutes definitely allows me to learn better and more. My teachers have a lot more time to cover the information with more detail, which I appreciate.”