Seniors left with upsetting farewell to BHS

Seniors left with upsetting farewell to BHS

Autumn Przybyla, Print Editor-in-Chief

The global COVID-19 Pandemic has left many restrictions and cancellations of traditional events, such as class of ’20 not being able to walk across the stage to receive their diploma or enjoy their senior Prom; this has also spilled into this year, as BHS administration ruled against any type of Prom or Homecoming formal dance.

Throughout the recent months, there had been discussion of combining Prom and Homecoming for one event, having a virtual Prom, and having an in-person Homecoming. However, it was decided that it was too unsafe to have either event, as “COVID restrictions minimized our opportunities to offer a safe dance,” this also means that most possible in-person activities relating to the dances are cancelled as well, such as having professional photos taken for Prom and hosting the traditional Homecoming Parade. However, Student Council will host Spirit Days, Powderpuff, and possibly a Pep Rally. These events show the crazy logic behind this decision, as Powderpuff is definitely a complete contact sport, whereas a Prom or Homecoming could be limited to only a person and their date.

With the recent loosening of CDC Guidelines allowing students to return to in-person school four days a week, students will be encountering at least double, if not triple, the amount of peers per day, without a guarantee of three-feet social distancing, without temperatures being taken when entering the building, and without sanitation of equipment/desks/chairs in between classes. With this being said, as it is allowed for students to be within a very close vicinity of their peers for four days a week, it is hard to understand why a two hour event that could have the same rules and even be held outside, would be decided against.

Throughout the many other in-person events that have been approved, sports have also been able to practice, including a contact sport like football. Although I know that sports being allowed to play was not the direct decision of the administration and I do not disagree with it, I think that it is unfair that while that is seen as safe, it is seen as unsafe for one event that only lasts for a few hours; a formal event like a dance could definitely be held outside, while not all sports can. Furthermore, surrounding schools, such as Genoa-Kingston, have plans for an in-person Prom and are intending for it to be outside. I believe that this is a very good idea and is one that would be successful, so it is upsetting to not see BHS consider a similar event.

Despite the facts of our community shifting to normalcy, class of ’21 has never had a Prom, and never will be able to. Furthermore, nothing about our senior year has been normal – we did not get to stand in the front of the student section and cheer on our football team in the fall, and we never will be able to. We did not get to embrace our school spirit throughout senior year festivities, and we never will be able to. We did not get to be the “leaders of the school”, and we will never be able to. We are barely getting our senior seasons, where our parents were barely able to watch. We are barely getting an in-person graduation, and we most likely will not be able to invite the entirety of our immediate families. Throughout the lack of events that seniors have been able to participate in, I would expect some sympathy and leniency.

It is ultimately very hard to understand the logic behind this decision against Prom and Homecoming, considering the loosening of CDC Guidelines that have caused the amount of other activities to be approved, such as sports, in-person student attendance four days a week, Mr. BHS, etc. Furthermore, a dance could easily be outside and mask-enforced, with waves of a limited amount of people for a limited amount of time, such as 50 people for one hour. We could even go as far as limit the dance to only seniors and their dates, as we have not had any type of Prom or a senior Homecoming. Although I know that there are an endless amount of risks within COVID-19, I do not think that it is fair to completely rule out the idea of an in-person Prom/Homecoming, as there would have been very many precautions and restrictions that could have been put into place, as previously stated.