After five months at home, C and L finally went back to school today. We shall, of course, see how long this lasts. The entire 7th/8th grade football team is currently quarantining at home after at least one kid tested positive last week. There will be more positive kids that pop up soon and all we can do is hope those numbers stay low enough to keep the school open and that our girls don’t get sick.

Both girls were awake when I got up at 6:30 this morning. We were out the door ten minutes earlier than planned and they were some of the first kids to try out the new entry process.[1] They have to be masked up all day, although they can remove them with their teachers’ permission while behind their desk screens. They are not moving classes during the day, rather the teachers will rotate through the rooms for different subjects. They will eat lunch at their desks. Classes will try to move outside when possible. All pretty standard stuff I imagine your kids are also learning as part of their new routines.

It’s been an interesting summer for St. P’s. The administration has been attempting to come up with plans to re-start school while navigating different mandates handed down from the state, county/city, and archdiocese. There was a big infrastructure project – replacing the 40+ year old HVAC system – that was just completed last night. Hopefully they did it right and the AC is blowing cool air through the classrooms today. Because guidelines on how classes should be composed have changed a couple times, we’ve had three different class lists for middle school. This caused consternation by both students and parents. C was thrilled with her class, then devastated, then thrilled again. I told her not to get too comfortable; shit is going to change a lot over the next eight months.

For now school sports are on. The girls have both had kickball practices and got their game schedules last night. C is following her big sister’s lead and cheering as an 8th grader. She had her first practice yesterday. L has basketball tryouts this weekend. Again, we’ll see how long this all lasts; L’s rec league soccer season has already been cancelled. I think the general view from parents is that we really need to get through the first month or two of school without having to shut down so kids can at least get one sport in. We all need the escape and release that comes from yelling at your kid to run faster, calling the official a blind idiot, and saying nasty things about the opposing parents. I kid, I kid!

M starts classes on Friday. She was supposed to start tomorrow but CHS decided to split the school in half for the first two days, with sophomores joining online tomorrow and live Friday. Monday they announced that since the first days are mostly busywork, virtual students don’t have to check in this week. She’s happy about the extra day to sleep in. The school is supposed to return to a normal schedule next Monday, but we anticipate that changing given the county has not yet granted a waiver to go to full enrollment on campus. We figure it will be some sort of one day live, one day virtual system similar to what the other Catholic schools in the county are doing.

But finally, even if temporarily, our kids are moving towards a more normal life and schedule.

  1. Different groups of grades pass through different sets of doors, there is a temperature check before entry, and they go straight to class instead of congregating in the gym and waiting for the first bell.  ↩