The day we thought — and feared — would come at last has come at last.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf has suspended classes at all schools in the commonwealth for the rest of the academic year. Students will learn the last quarter of the 2019-20 school year online, at home, away from any risks of getting sick or getting others sick with coronavirus.
It wasn’t easy to hear. It’s not easy to think about finishing the last 2.5 months of school at home, away from the watchful and helpful eyes of teacher instruction. It’s heartbreaking to realize that those activities many students looked forward to — musical concerts, school musicals, recitals, spring sports, proms, fun days and more — will probably not happen. If they do, who’s to say that all students can participate? There are summer vacation plans and, for those high school seniors, possible early semesters for college, reporting for duty in the armed forces and so on.
The seniors. My heart aches for them. If anything, I hope that this entire thing makes them stronger as they look ahead to life after high school.
Earlier this week, my daughter said “2020 (stinks)” after learning about the covering of Centralia’s Graffiti Highway and the closing of The Roller Roost II skating rink in Pottsville. I kind of agree with her. The start of the 21st Century’s “Roaring ’20s” have certainly roared, just not in good ways.
If you think about it, this year’s winter remained largely snow-free. In Schuylkill County, most school districts remained free of snow days, so the idea of a full Easter break sounded great.
Not so fast. While Mother Nature sat back, COVID-19 said, “Hold my beer. Watch this.” (Cue the social media memes!)
We look forward to rather unusual Easter weekend celebration. Church services will be streamed online. Egg hunts will be confined to backyards. Photos with the Easter Bunny might just feature a stuffed bunny. Easter dinners will be either takeout or made at home — a tough one for me and my children. We usually enjoy a gathering at my parents’ house.
COVID-19 has handed us lemons. Let’s make the best lemonade that we can to sweeten our Easter holiday and the remainder of the school year. Hopefully things will be a little more sweeter as summer approaches.
The mom of a dancing teen and a tween who enjoys scouting and hockey, Katie Campomizzi-Clews is a copy editor at The Republican-Herald. She began her career at The RH as a staff writer following graduation from Lycoming College, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in mass communication with a minor in psychology. She shares her experiences of balancing work and parenting and takes a look at issues, events and trends concerning parents and children.