Starting Senior Year Online

Senior+Taylor+Jones+is+excited+for+her+final+year+at+Esperanza+with+all+her+friends+and+is+hoping+we+will+all+be+able+to+safely+return+to+campus+soon.++%22It%27s+our+final+year+out+of+our+four+years+together%2C+and+it+would+be+the+best+just+seeing+people+face-to-face.%22+

Photo obtained by Taylor Jones.

Senior Taylor Jones is excited for her final year at Esperanza with all her friends and is hoping we will all be able to safely return to campus soon. “It’s our final year out of our four years together, and it would be the best just seeing people face-to-face.”

Everyone grows up imagining their perfect senior year and finally throwing that cap in the air surrounded by all their peers. From rival football games, to hyped up school rallies, to the magical night of Prom, senior year is what students dream of, and quite literally the year movies are made of. But what happens when all of those dreams get flipped upside down and students are told their senior year will be taught online in the middle of a global pandemic? Well, that is exactly what happened to the senior class of 2021. 

By the middle of the summer, it was clear that our senior year was most likely going to start online, and all the fun activities like sports and dances were going to be canceled or postponed. Hearing that the most anticipated year of high school is going to be on Zoom is obviously something that many don’t take joy in. 

I was crushed,” said ASB President Kaylee Bhasin, “but at the same time I knew there wasn’t any way we could start the year normally considering the conditions.” While it is a good thing that PYLUSD is taking everyone’s health seriously, it is hard not to miss some of the things we were all so anxiously excited for. “I miss the lunch tables with my friends and normal practices with the team,” said Nick Koclanakis. 

The adjustment to Zoom classes hasn’t been easy either. It has been a struggle for students and teachers alike to adjust to learning and teaching through a screen as well as adapting to the new ways of doing school work. “The hardest part, for me, was the interaction that in-person school gave,” said Emilia Shahverdian. Seeing your friends at break and lunch time, being surrounded by your peers and hearing the high pitch school bell ring is all part of the high school experience. But now we are confined by the walls of our homes.

In the chaos, we must try to remain on the positive side. Now we can wake up later, enjoy a new block schedule and go to school in the comfort of our pj’s and bedrooms. “I do enjoy being able to sleep in a lot more and not needing to drive to school,” said  Dylan Smock. By looking on the brighter side, we can still make this year amazing and support each other in this unpredictable time. 

Hopefully, we can return to school in these upcoming months as predicted. In the meantime, students have been using their free time inside to do things they enjoy and try to remain optimistic. “I’ve spent a lot of time learning new skills since I have so much time at home that it’s made things quite enjoyable and kept my outlook positive,” said Christopher Lamanski. 

On the chance we do go back to school, seniors are already getting excited about the possibility of a somewhat normal senior year, even with all the new safety guidelines. “I’m excited to just see everybody,” said Taylor Jones. “It’s our final year out of our four years together, and it would be the best just finally seeing people face-to-face.”

Although this isn’t the ideal, dream senior year we all had hoped for, we must make the best of the situation. This is our final year together as a class before we all go separate ways to pursue our futures wherever that may be. So, go to school events when you can, remain in contact with your friends and try new things. Though it may be hard right now with so many changes and unknowns, it is vital we all support each other and don’t let our circumstances ruin our senior year because, at the end of the day, we are all in this together.