Returning to School: Two Different Perspectives from Kids by Liz Farrell

Updated: Nov 18, 2020

Originally published in The Marina Times.


As San Francisco’s Covid numbers are rising rapidly, many parents might be reconsidering their child’s return to campus. We have heard much national debate from administrators, teachers, and parents about classroom safety but not much about how kids feel. Ultimately, this will be the parents’ choice, but children have their own opinions or feelings about returning to campus.


I sat down with two of my kids to ask them what they thought and how they were feeling about continuing at-home learning or returning to school. Here are their two different perspectives: 


MALE, SEVENTH GRADE

I am apprehensive about the possibility of returning to in-person school. I’m not nervous about getting sick — I think my health is in good hands with all the new safety precautions the school has put in place. My biggest worry or fear is it will be so different, and I won’t like it. I liked school before Covid. I enjoyed my teachers and classes, horsing around with my friends at recess, and being able to move about freely. I’m not excited about wearing a mask and face shield all day, worrying about being six feet apart from buddies, and dealing with more rules than already existed. I do think a positive will be being in the same room with my teachers. You are able to have more of a connection in person than over a screen. 


This whole Covid thing is getting old, and I know when life gets back to normal, I will have a new appreciation for even the small things.


I have a lot more freedom and independence at home. I like doing school from the comfort of home, not rushing out in the morning and having my dog, Ridley, at my feet all day. The hardest part has been the lack of sports and not being able to play competitively. I have had more time to spend with my siblings, which can be both good and bad. I also have had more time to learn new things like magic, and I am working on building a PC. I have stayed connected with friends through video games, texting, and Facetime. For me it is important to have a schedule or routine that includes daily exercise and outside time. This whole Covid thing is getting old, and I know when life gets back to normal, I will have a new appreciation for even the small things.


FEMALE, NINTH GRADE

I am so excited and anxious to get on campus. Freshman year is when you get to meet a lot of people and I can’t wait to do that. Starting a new school with new teachers and classmates is hard over Zoom, and meeting people through a screen is not ideal. I am looking forward most to in-person interaction. I am not nervous about Covid. I think if we all continue to wear masks and do what we have been doing we will be fine.