NASH COONS – GRZEXP.com Staff
The year 2020 came with a whirl of excitement as the new decade began, but it also came with a global pandemic that shut down the world. Along with many small businesses, schools were one of the things that were shut down by COVID-19 followed by many other businesses. For the first five weeks of the school year, students did online school using digital communications, such as Zoom or Webex, to be able to meet with their teacher and the rest of the class. Now that students are back full time, rules and guidelines have been placed for their safety.
When students were allowed to go back to school, they were first greeted with new rules that have been put in place. Maricopa County has mandated that all students and staff on a public school campus must be wearing a mask. Students are allowed to take the masks off when at lunch, but otherwise they are mandatory. Lunch does not mean students are off the hook though. Benches and tables are taped off so only three people are allowed to sit on each side of the table and on each bench. Marks have also been made in hallways outside classrooms so when lining up for class, students can stand on these marks and socially distance.
COVID has also affected the school’s transportation as well. When online school was put in place, bus drivers were no longer needed, forcing bus drivers to find other jobs. Now that school is back in person, the bus drivers have already found other jobs causing a shortage. According to the bus driver of route 202, Gilbert Public Schools is short by 35 bus drivers. To make up for this problem, routes have been combined. Bus rides can be as long as 30 minutes for some students, and they can be waiting just as long for the bus to arrive.
The Coronavirus has changed everything anybody could imagine of. First all of the students and staff had to adjust to online school. When in person school returned, guidelines were placed and students and staff were once again forced to adjust. While the adjustments may be hard, they were all necessary to make in person school possible.