How People Feel About Returning to School

Opinions have been overall positive concerning our return to in-person learning


Edgar Torabyan, Staff Writer

On April 26, Glendale High School reopened, and hundreds of students have returned to campus for in-person learning. Not surprisingly, people have different opinions about the reopening. 

The Glendale Unified School District believes that they have made schools safe for reopening. The District has done surveys, collected data, and renovated our schools, so this was an important move and something they’ve been preparing for for months.

As COVID-19 cases in LA County have dropped, schools were allowed to reopen at limited capacity. Other than common sense rules, like social distancing and wearing face masks, every student needs a QR code to enter the school, and temperature checkpoints have been installed. 

The latest CDC guidelines say that “fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.” GUSD helped vaccinate as many people as possible, by working with vaccination sites to vaccinate their staff and then their students. Thanks to these efforts, around 1 in 2 people in Glendale have been vaccinated, according to Glendale COVID-19 dashboard.

The classrooms now feel like a time capsule for many people. Everyone thought that they were going to return to class after the “2 weeks to flatten the curve” which turned out to be a full year. Ms. Electra Stafford felt like coming back to school a year later was “like visiting an old lost friend.” Her plants were dead, and her calendar still showed March 2020. But despite all that, Ms. Stafford says she is “so very glad to see my students again.”

Many students feel good about returning to school. Miles O’Bryan says in-person learning is better, as “it’s easier for me to learn when I can actually hear the teacher and ask questions, rather than just unmuting.” The data that GUSD has collected through surveys agree with him. According to the GUSD Fall 2020 Distance Learning survey, only 27% of students said that they learn as much during online classes as they did during in-person instruction.

Overall, it looks like the reopening has been a great success. Since the reopening of schools on April 26, the COVID-19 infection rate in Glendale has remained steady, at around 10 new cases per day. According to the GUSD COVID-19 dashboard, Glendale High School has a 0.00% positivity rate of student and staff from contact tracing, despite having 367 students and 192 staff on campus. 

Because of everything that has changed with our school, it’s understandable why most people have chosen to finish the school year through distance learning. This is the reality of in-person learning during a pandemic. But If you have chosen to come back, and would like to know more about why others chose not to, read our Opinion piece on the issue.