MSHSAA should apply equal strict COVID restrictions


For many students, school offers them a safe place, a warm meal, and a good education with opportunities to discover and pursue passions, but COVID has changed some of that.
While our school has been lucky enough to be in-person all school year, the activities held here have been neglected due to COVID. The CoronaVirus put students at a very serious risk this past year, the school began taking all precautions necessary to keep students safe from the virus. Students began wearing masks, social distancing at lunch and avoiding assemblies. In addition, all music, speech, and art contests are being held virtually or even cancelled. COVID has made school very dull.
This year, school provided us with nothing special to look forward to, the same schedule, same teachers, same students, with no activities. It has made it difficult for students to even want to roll out of bed and think about enjoying their day. Even for the students who hated school before, hate it even more. Everyone has their own personal problems and it’s important for school to provide happiness for the kids who attend here. This could be their only peace, meal, or time to socialize. If students aren’t happy with the environment they’re in, it makes it more difficult for them to succeed.
Although we had one assembly for Courtwarming this year, many activities that we have previously held have been cancelled, including Homecoming events, the blood drive, the Veteran’s Day assembly and many more.
COVID requirements have seemed to be restricting more in other departments than others. The sports department, although it’s impossible to do virtual sports, still have gotten to do what they love with minor restrictions. Thanks to the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA), athletes still get that moment of being on the field with all eyes on them – the pressure, anxiety, all the adrenaline. If the wrestling team can wrestle, with no mask and no way of distancing, then I believe other departments such as, FFA, FBLA, FCCLA, band, speech, and any others, should have just as much of the right as sports kids to do what they love. Turning everything virtual on these students is taking so much away, they should have their chance to pursue their love for their hobby the right way.
Oklahoma, Texas, Wyoming, Mississippi, and other states have completely dropped their COVID restrictions, there have been no major outbreaks, they have stayed persistent. The country is averaging about 1,000 newly reported deaths a day, the fewest cases since November according to a March 24 article in The New York Times. The school itself hasn’t had an outbreak since football season. Not to mention, many students, and even staff members don’t necessarily follow the restrictions. I see students walking down the halls with no mask, no distancing, high fives and hugs, but we can barely have a prom. The last high school days are happening for seniors right now, and they have got to experience almost no fun, no spirit, all due to a virus that can easily be avoided.
We should safely bring back our activities. Take precautions in our assemblies such as the last one we held. Taking precautions in the live action band/choir/speech contest but still allowing our students to attend them. School is a place that you’re allowed to be yourself, to help your future, make so many friends, and try new things. If we restrict the school lives of students, there’s gonna be no more school spirit, no socialization. Masks have not only restricted our school spirit, but the students themselves. No one even smiles when they walk past each other anymore, and why should they? You can’t even see their faces. COVID has made the school a prison full of zombies.