Currently: Back to School Quarantine

September 2, 2020

The Beginning of Quarantine

If you read my recent post entitled Currently: College Visits & Back to School Amidst COVID-19, you would know that as of now, my school is welcoming students back to campus for in-person learning. While plans may change at any minute depending on the spread of the virus, students are set to return the second week in September. To ensure the health and safety of everyone on campus, though, my school issued a mandatory fourteen day quarantine for all students, faculty, and staff members prior to stepping onto campus, and another quarantine will take place after students are tested upon their arrival to campus.

Online & In-Person Learning

As mentioned above, unlike many schools across the country, my school is planning to resume in-person learning for the fall trimester. While a completely virtual curriculum was offered, only around fifteen percent of the student body chose to learn online. Even though we are set to learn on campus, the first week or so of classes will begin online until it the school is confident that no one in the school community has COVID-19. As of now, I am unsure of what an in-person academic day will look like; whether classes will be held outside under tents or on grassy lawns, where students will eat lunch, and what extracurricular activities will still be held. 

Senior Year

Though I am set to attend school in person, the start to my senior year, as for seniors all across the United States and in most other countries around the world, will be very different. At my school, no families will flood the campus on convocation to drop off their children, no jubilant cheers will be heard along the sidelines of the field hockey or soccer fields, and no students will be seen shuffling shoulder to shoulder to their next class. While I am of course saddened by the interruption to these long standing traditions, when considering this in context of the larger toll of the virus, these disruptions are so small in scale. I am simply thankful that I am able to return to school, and that I can count on my school to follow health and safety guidelines and prioritize the wellbeing of its students and teachers.

A Netflix Recommendation

I much prefer watching movies or documentaries to TV shows. Aside from Stranger Things and Big Little Lies, there are very few shows that I have thoroughly enjoyed. Much of the reason is simply because I usually refrain from starting an episode out of fear that I might become engrossed in a show. Another, though, is that I love to feeling like I am learning something new or growing in some form when I watch something, and I usually do not feel that way while watching TV. Unorthodox, however, proved to be an exception. A four episode miniseries that debuted on Netflix in March of this year, Unorthodox is set in the ultra-Orthodox community of Williamsburg in Brooklyn, New York. Esty, the nineteen year-old protagonist, leaves behind her husband whom she was wedded in an arranged marriage and flees to Berlin, Germany. The series did have elements that made it watch almost like a documentary, likely due to the fact that it was inspired by an autobiography written by Deborah Feldman entitled Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots. I learned so much about the ultra-Orthodox sects of Judaism just from this short miniseries, and I am very tempted to read Feldman's autobiography.

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