Student Life During COVID

Jordane Branch, Staff Writer

Friday, March 13, 2020. That day was the last time I saw the inside of our school until Monday, September 20, 2021 when I returned. People throughout the entire world lost connection with each other. Outside was a ghost town for many months. My entire sophomore year was online. I lost connection with many of my friends from school and many family members. 

It’s now January 2022, and life has been in shades of grey. Coming back from winter break and the new year, to me so many classrooms seemed empty and so did the halls. Now we are going virtual as one of many schools newly announced for this move – the only high school – and this just adds to the confusion and uncertainty of it all.

The MCPS never seems to have the answer to the thousands of questions students, educators, and their families have regarding how we are going to maintain the health of our community. Fear and uncertainty have flooded the minds and hearts of many. 

Being a high school student is challenging nowadays. The school year feels interminable; and like most of my classmates, I am losing drive. All last year, teachers told the class of 2023 (my class) that next year is your most important academic year– and it seems to be the hardest, too. Teachers have been just as absent as students, and because of the pandemic everyone is losing class time.  The school has been hosting testing clinics on Wednesdays, and testing has become the new normal. The first semester of the 2020-2021 school year at Paint Branch concludes this Friday, and who knows if we will be in school for the start of second semester.

This whole school year has been, “bear with us, together we can overcome this.” As a student, I am running low on drive and patience. All storms must end, and there’s always light at the end of the tunnel; but from where we are as a community, it’s hard to observe and be optimistic.