by Grace Gilson

The First Day of School

It was July in the year 2020, the days were hot, and humidity was hanging in the air almost like soup. It was still uncertain what the return to school would look like. No one knew for certain whether the school year would happen remotely, using zoom, or in the school. The tension was felt by all.

Finally, the plan was revealed for how the school year will run. To provide sufficient space, only half of the student body would be on campus at a time. Mondays were to be remote and electives would take place then. When a student was at home and the other half of the student body was on campus, they would join the class by means of Zoom. 

Approaching the first day of school, I got to go into the building once. My mentor led me around the school, pointing out protocols we would have to follow. During this orientation, I met some of the other students in my mentor group and got acquainted with the building. It felt almost normal. 

The first day of school though? It will be virtual, as will the first two weeks as we adjust to a new school year. 

There was no first day of school outfit to choose. There was no first day of school drive to school. Instead, I sat at my desk in a makeshift office in my basement and joined zoom link after zoom link. Being at a new school, I had hoped to make many new friends, especially on the first day of classes, but unfortunately I met no one. The people in my classes remained simply strangers in rectangles on my computer. Everyone was afraid to unmute. Everyone was afraid to talk.