Full Capacity

How Do the Students Feel?


Gabbie Dew and Kaitie Lamb

Dyer County High School is one of the few schools that has decided to switch to full capacity. While jumping back into the regular routine seems like the right thing, some students feel as if they’re unsafe and that it’s too early to start at full force. “Personally, I don’t agree with the decision,” says Austin Jacobs, a senior this year at Dyer County. “The halls are crowded, which means we’re more at risk to catch COVID, and there’s no possible way to socially distance ourselves.” Others say they feel like the school’s decision isn’t safe, but they’re glad to be back with all of their friends and not have to struggle with certain classes that are more difficult to do online at home. Kristen Farley, a student, says, “I’m on the fence about it because I feel like we came back too early and case numbers are still high, but I’m glad I don’t have to do certain things online. For instance, I’m in a guitar class and some kids don’t have guitars at home that they can practice with so they fall behind.” 

Even though students enjoy having all of their friends in their classes, the amount of students being sent home is alarming to them. A close friend of mine was recently sent home because two kids who sat near her in class were sent home for being exposed to the virus. With this being her senior year she feels as if these circumstances are taking away her last year: “ I used to like school, but going to full capacity makes me anxious and I don’t enjoy it as much.” 

So if the students are so concerned about their safety, why would the school make the decision to start at full capacity? The school decided to go to full capacity so students would get their schoolwork done more efficiently. “Students weren’t doing their work on the days they were at home, so the school decided to bring everyone back to the school.” A teacher explains. Putting the students on a five week routine seemed like the best option to keep them on track and prevent them from failing. 

Personally, I don’t agree with going to full capacity. Students had the option to choose online school or the traditional school learning experience at the beginning of the year, but some kids are okay with coming to school with half as many kids than a hundred percent capacity. Online school is no longer an option for students who don’t feel safe being in school with all the students at once. I, and many other students, live with their grandparents or family members who are at high risk to catch the virus. If I am sent home with the virus germ, it could be fatal to my grandmother and other relatives. I feel there could be a more responsible and safer way to have us all on track and keep us healthy. 

How do you feel about the school’s decision on full capacity? Maybe you can get your work finished in a timely manner and see all of your friends throughout the school day, or maybe you come to school with the feeling you may be sent home before the week is over. For now, the school has not shown any evidence that they believe going back to phase two is in the works.