Empty Classrooms and A New Era of COVID-19


What an odd way to start the second semester, walking into classrooms half empty and being exposed to COVID virtually everywhere you go. With COVID-19 cases spiking once again, many students are testing positive and having to quarantine at home, not being allowed to come to school for in-person learning. With so many absences, many teachers have resorted to hosting zoom meetings during class to make up for the time lost. As COVID cases rise, the situation seems to get messier and things get more complicated, with not many form answers in sight. 

Students like Somara Oliva and Ivan Meza, who were both out due to COVID, share their experiences with how being absent impacted them. Furthermore, they share their experiences with Zoom learning and how different it was from last year. Additionally, many parents express their frustration with LAUSD schools not closing down amidst the spike of the numbers. 

Somara Oliva, a senior at North Hollywood High stated: “Unfortunately I had to be out for about a week but luckily teachers like Mr. Gough and Ms. Rojas gave me an opportunity to join class through Zoom.” When asked how she felt about it, she stated she was extremely grateful to have an opportunity to join the classes through zoom since it made her feel like she was still a part of the class and not falling behind as much as she would if she were completely absent. She stated that since those classes move very fast, being able to join the Zooms and keep up with the pace was very helpful to her. 

Similar to Somara, Ivan Meza, another senior at North Hollywood stated that “missing almost two weeks because of COVID was very stressful but my teachers were very helpful in keeping me updated with my classes.” He stated that he was able to stay caught up with his schoolwork because of how cooperative his teachers were in assisting him with staying up to date with all his work. 

Ms. Conde expressed her concerns as well, stating that “I have never had this many students absent at once.” This seems to be the case with lots of teachers, as many students and teachers as well have noticed classrooms being half empty and much more quiet then they usually are. All teachers and students are hoping the situation gets better soon.

On Deadline, a news source that reported on LAUSD COVID cases spiking, many parents voiced their concerns in the comments of the article. People have made statements such as, “Our children need to go back to the remote! My son and daughter tested positive today for the second time” and went on to say that the virtual learning program, City Of Angels, that was offered to them was terrible and not at all productive for their students. 

It is clear that this is not just a North Hollywood problem, it is an LAUSD problem. With about 80,000 students testing positive for the virus only one week into school, it is clear that students and teachers should be extremely concerned about COVID-19. Now more than ever, it is so important to wear a mast at all times, sanitize often, and get vaccinated and boosted if not already done so.