Silence. Emptiness. Hallways, Senior Court, and classrooms were nearly vacant, with only a few students and a teacher in the room. That’s what was happening in Oakland High as many schools through the U.S. were closing down for the remainder of the school year.
On Friday, March 13, O-High announced that school would be closed for the next three weeks. O-High looked like a ghost town, lacking the number of students that showed up along with some teachers that decided to stay home from work.
Isolation. We are isolating ourselves from work, school, and society to stop the spread of the virus. Looking outside from your window, it makes you feel lonely and even though you can face time, human interaction is just as important. This part of the story is told through the point of view of an O-High student impacted through this unprecedented time. She is going to explain how it made her feel, how it impacts her, and what this means for her.
“The whole situation makes me feel so upset and sad because people are buying up supplies like toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and face masks but there are other people who need more like the healthcare workers who risk their lives every day,” said Ruki Singh, an ESA junior, who works for Target.
“It impacts me every day because when I go to work, I have to stock up shelves but like two hours later in my shift, there are a bunch of empty shelves and when people ask for a certain item, I don’t know if we even have it in stock because there are so many empty shelves,” Singh added.
According to statistics provided by CNN, the number of cases has been rising since March 11, and have continued to skyrocket with new cases being reported every day. In Alameda County, the total of cases is 19,427 with 541 deaths, but with a total of 307 people who have recovered. The total number of cases that have been confirmed worldwide are 1,696,139 cases with 376,200 people who recovered, and 102,669 deaths so far.
On Friday, April 13, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced during a press conference, “I don’t think the schools are going to open again,” according to an article by Politico.com. This is a precaution being taken to help stop the spread of COVID-19 that has been spreading through the United States since the first reported case back in late February.
Now the question is, “How are students going to learn through this difficult time?” Teachers at Oakland High are posting assignments on Google Classroom and having class time using Zoom. Christopher Johnston, an English teacher for ESA, has been posting assignments regularly for his students to do.
“Virtual school is our reality now. In order for us to flatten the curve, we need to continue to do as much social distancing and avoid contact with our family and friends as much as we can,” said Johnston.
The impact of COVID-19 is very damaging to the economy because millions of people are unemployed. Students have to learn from home or people have to work from home, and businesses have to shut down in order to stop the spread of the virus. Times are hard, but the more we continue to follow the health regulations that the CDC tells us to, the sooner we can get back to our normal routines.