Davis High students vary on reasons to return to campus

PHOTO: Many students have opted to return to campus for quarter four while others will remain in distance learning.

By Anisha Dhakal and Genna Olavarri,

BlueDevilHUB.com Editors–

The Davis Joint Unified School District is scheduled to reopen on April 12 as long as county set guidelines are met. Families were required to complete a survey between March 8-14 with their preferences for the remaining portion of the school year. Students have various reasons for their decision on whether or not to return to the classroom this year.

Sophomore Ella Heringer feels unmotivated to complete their work when doing school from home and hopes that being in a classroom will provide the necessary encouragement.

“I stay in my pajamas all day until [lacrosse] practice so I think that would help me a lot just being able to like say hi to people in the mornings [it] would kind of like wake me up and really inspire me to actually do my work,” Heringer said.

Others seek the hybrid model for a change in their routines. 

“I’m looking forward to leaving the house more and having something to look forward to. I’m also looking forward to being around more people even though I might not be able to interact with them at all. I still think it might be fun,” sophomore Isabella Johnson said. 

Quarter four will be seniors’ last chance to attend DHS in person and students like senior Alex Gao are seizing the opportunity.

“I kind of just want to end the school year at least like being in the classroom again just one time for a quarter and talk to some teachers face-to-face,” Gao said. 

Junior Julie Thomas prefers distance learning, but as a member of the DHS Baroque Ensemble, orchestra teacher Angelo Moreno has convinced her to come back to campus.

“It’s […] hard for him to teach just like instruments in general over Zoom and it’s really hard to like individually assess people during classes which he usually does in person,” Thomas said. “I’d rather take my classes from home, but since I should be doing orchestra in person, I have to go to all of them.”

For other students, like junior Kellen Dulcich, their parents made the decision for them. 

Dulcich was vaccinated earlier this year and his parents elected for him to return to in-person learning.

“The decision to go back to school was actually my parents’. I think it [the fact that I’m vaccinated] went into their decision, but personally, I would have gone back to school either way,” Dulcich said.

Sophomore Max McMullen’s parents also made the decision for him to return to in-person school. McMullen, however, is not thrilled with their choice.

“I’m not sure very many people are going back so I’m not sure if I’m going to see very many of my friends,” McMullen said.

Many DHS students have opted to continue learning exclusively from home. 

Junior Kripalee Niroula has decided to not return to school this spring altogether. 

“I’d rather go back to school next year because we are just going to be on laptops at school so I don’t really see the point in it at all. I just hope that we’ll be able to actually fully return to school next year because having an entire year of high school online hasn’t been fun.”

Junior Sophia LaPerle and her brother, Davinci High junior Connor LaPerle, are among the students that have decided to remain solely in distance learning.

“My grandmother lives with us in our house currently since […] COVID started so I don’t want to risk going on campus and then catching it and [bringing] it home or anything like that,” Sophia said.

Similar to the LaPerles, senior Sofia Smoodin-Kaplan lives with older family members.  Smoodin-Kaplan also has a more unique reason for staying home: a recent operation.

“I have like a very comfortable chair that’s really good for my back because I had back surgery and I’m still like recovering […] so I think going back and forth from school could be kind of a lot,” Smoodin-Kaplan said.

While the number of DHS students recovering from back surgery is presumably low, some students have likely elected to stay home due to other medical reasons.

Other students are still unsure regarding their decision to return to school for various reasons. 

Senior Manulya Gunasakera is still undecided on her return to school due to little information given to families regarding what to expect with class in person. 

“I think it would be nice to see everyone that I haven’t been able to see for over a year now, but it’s frustrating that we have received such little information regarding what to expect,” Gunasakera said.

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