Students are becoming too relaxed with COVID-19 procedures

PVHS+offers+optional+hand+sanitizer+stations%2C+prompting+students+to+make+a+choice+on+the+safety+precautions+they+wish+to+take.

Jonathan Glaum

PVHS offers optional hand sanitizer stations, prompting students to make a choice on the safety precautions they wish to take.

Jonathan Glaum, Multimedia Manager

Ever since the beginning of the pandemic, the Pleasant Valley Community School District has implemented procedures for students to comply with to keep students and faculty safe.

After the spike in COVID-19 cases in late November, the CDC stated it is vital now more than ever to continue taking precautions to prevent the spread of the virus. However, students are instead becoming more relaxed with important safety measures, like frequently using hand sanitizer, washing hands and properly social distancing.

Senior Sarah Ramsdell has witnessed this lack of compliance firsthand from the activities she participates in at PVHS, including the PV Hybrid A Band. “Students are becoming more relaxed and less focused on keeping social distances,” Ramsdell explained. “Wearing masks is still happening, but social distancing is getting harder in the hallways.”

Traffic signs in the hallways are one way that PVHS administration attempts to combat the congestion. Principal Darren Erickson addressed the goal of implementing the signs and if he believes they’re making a difference in the safety of students.

“I think students are doing a very good job with masking, following safety protocol and for the most part social distancing. I think together we have been effective at reducing the risk of exposure within the school. We can always do better, so I hope everyone continues to be diligent in following the rules,” Erickson commented.

As someone who walks the halls of PVHS, I can say that I do not see students abiding by the posted traffic signs, and furthermore don’t see them as an effective way to combat the spread of COVID-19 at school. Masks protocols, however, are being followed more frequently than traffic signs and are proven to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 when taken advantage of and used properly.

The CDC continues to recommend masks be worn at all times at school by students and faculty. PVHS Physical Education teacher Angie Musal gave insight into what she is doing in her classroom to keep teachers as well as students safe.

“I feel all the students have been pretty compliant during PE class. We have been doing our best to spray the students’ hands with sanitizer at the beginning and end of class, especially if equipment was involved,” Musal explained.

Musal, along with other teachers and staff, continues to expect students to take their safety into their own hands. Students must take advantage of the sanitizers and other safety measures provided to them by the school.

It is clear COVID-19 is not over yet, despite a vaccine being in the works. Until then, students must be responsible for the safety of both themselves and students around them to keep school in session for the remainder of the school year.