Summit Denali staff, students independently reach consensus on Covid guidelines

By Meiru Chen, Sophia Garcia and Karissa Tsang

Staff Writers

As Summit Denali High School students return from winter break, new variants of the coronavirus continue to mutate and spread. Summit Denali continues to stay open as these new variants of Covid continue to mutate.

On Jan. 5, student journalists interviewed students at Summit Denali about their insights on the Covid safety measures the school enforces and how they feel after two years into the pandemic and returning to in-person school.

Summit Denali senior Ella Chen said students aren’t as diligent as before the pandemic and online school. “A lot of my friends and other people I’ve seen find it harder to keep up now from an online school,” she said. “For the teachers, a lot of them are really sweet and they could tell students aren’t as diligent as before and they have to adjust their lessons.”

Summit Denali senior Ella Chen PHOTO CREDIT: Karissa Tang

“Even for teachers, in-person learning is favored over online learning. You lose so much from online classes that you have in-person,” Modern World II teacher Karla Guerrero said. “I think in-person will always be the better one, definitely. I wish there was a hybrid or something but I think in person is the winner. You lose so much online, you lose understanding, collaboration, getting to know each other. It gets lost– I’m definitely glad to be back. But it’s definitely not perfect.”  

Statistics show that there is no 100% way to be immune from the virus, which includes the vaccines, wearing masks, washing hands, and social distancing but we do have measures that could help lower the probability of catching COVID.

Modern World History II teacher Karla Guerro expressed her feelings about her safety because of the policies of the school directed:  “I think there are definitely resources available. And protocols. There’s only so much you can do in times like this.”

“They do provide hand sanitizer, they have masks for everybody. I get my masks from here. And I trust these ones, but yeah, from what I’ve seen I feel secure coming to school every day knowing they’re taking their measures.”

On the other hand, Summit Denali freshman Jana Dominguez recalls the school taking students who haven’t been vaccinated to take COVID tests weekly. 

Dominguez said, “I like that they’re kidnapping students to take tests, and ask to sanitize their hands and stuff.”

Executive Director Kevin Bock said he trusts the school rules made by Santa Clara County. He said, “What we’ve been doing from  the beginning, back in March, is that we have been really specific from what directions we get from the county, and what we can do is follow the directions we get from them day by day.”

Summit Denali Executive Director Kevin Bock PHOTO CREDIT: Karissa Tang

 Summit Denali has followed the COVID policies since March 2021, when in-person school started again. Some examples of those policies are masks, hand sanitizers, and spacing of students. The school promotes handwashing often and eating healthy to promote immunity, 

 As our community continues to endure the Covid pandemic, they continue to assist each other during these times. “I think our community has done a very good job at being highly vaccinated at what the health said, and that everyone is wearing masks that they’ve done a really good job in,” Bock said. “Our students really respect each other and that everyone’s level is different from each other and that they really respect everyone.”

Featured Image at the top of the post:

Jackie Pedrava and Ana Walker at the front of the high school campus. PHOTO CREDIT: Sophia Garcia

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