Omicron Effects on Leadership Students

“We are just now getting students back into the swing of things and suddenly we’re back at the start.”

Karma Turner, Senior Reporter

Omicron has been spreading rapidly as of late and the effects of this have varied amongst people. Schools, extracurricular activities, and even performances have been shut down or limited due to the recent spike in cases. Even for those who are continuing to work, the list of guidelines they must follow is long and unforgiving. Along with that students and teachers are being exposed to this sickness that can set them back weeks. Which leads us to wonder what exactly they are doing to abide by these rules, whilst still being able to do their part? 

Interactiveness and initiative are things students need to be active participants in to succeed, not only for elective classes but in core ones as well. It’s a skill that teaches students how to be successful and caring people. But unfortunately leadership (and other affiliated classes) has been impacted harshly by the restrictions that have come beside the Omicron spike. Students can no longer participate in dances, activities with large attendance, and as of recent, blood drives. All things that fuel leadership classes. 

“It has been extremely difficult to do leadership in person as of the last couple of months. Leadership classes were very dull during COVID because most students were online for half the year. We are just now getting students back into the swing of things and suddenly we’re back at the start. It’s incredibly sad that students are once again losing the ability to have hands-on learning experience, and even more unfortunate that we (teachers) are having to put them, basically, through lockdown again. With no set schedule, how we will progress with leadership is hard to predict.” Traci Clarke, the leadership teacher at Rex Putnam High School says. 

As of now, most high schools are unable to do the bare minimum of leadership activities. School wide activities and fundraising is meant to bring a school together for a cause. It’s something enjoyable students have to look forward to which keeps them interacting in school. With almost all monthly leadership plans for high schools being canceled administrators are finding students are less excited about attending school. Adding on to the fact that students are slowly losing their extracurriculars and sports, school is becoming an environment that students feel miserable in. 

 

“Yeah, it’s really hard. The last big activity we were allowed to do was months ago now and you can just feel the distance that’s growing between your peers. COVID is scary and not having anything to boost the students during it is difficult for leadership students.” Jayda Hardin, a leadership 2 student at Rex Putnam says.

With everything being as uncertain as it is, students are worried they will have to go back to the way things were during distance learning, which consisted mostly of paperwork. Leadership students work to make a difference in their community and they feel as though that cannot be done the way it is going. But their voices often go unheard when the topic of keeping students (and teachers) safe is brought up. Is there a way students participating in leadership class can keep students safe and healthy whilst still being able to do their jobs as the backbone of the student body? As of now, they are still waiting on the answers to these pressing questions.