How Other Downriver Schools Are Dealing With COVID-19


Carlee Robbins, News & Opinions Reporter

During the pandemic, Downriver school districts have had varying approaches to the COVID-19 shutdowns. With the recent second wave of the virus, school had to determine quickly what their plan was. Flat Rock High School was one of these schools. On November 12, the superintendent of the high school sent out a newsletter stating the schools in person learners will be out of school from November 16 to December 4. However, this information has been updated to have the students return on a date that is undetermined. Before the students had to switch to online learning, they had been on a hybrid schedule. On Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, the students would go to the school for in-person learning. On Wednesday, the students would take their classes from the comfort of their homes.

Another school who had to make a quick decision about COVID shutdown was all of the Gibraltar schools. Before they were shut down, Carlson Highschool had been following a block schedule similar to the one Flat Rock Highschool had. Kloie Farago, a student at Carlson, stated “We had 3 blocks a day: 1,3,5 on Mondays and Thursdays and 2,4,6 on the other days. Wednesday we’re online for zooms with all 6 classes.” This means that the students were going to specific classes each day. The students had mixed feelings about this arrangement, but many thought that it was a good way to keep contact to a minimum. This had to end though because of being advised to not hold in-person learning. Amy Conway, the superintendent of the Gibraltar schools, sent out a newsletter on November 15 giving parents and students all the information they would need. The newsletter stated that the students were scheduled to be out of school from November 17 to December 7. However, there was another newsletter sent out on December 3 updating that information. It stated that K-8 schools will be open again on December 7 and Carlson Highschool will be open on December 10. 

Wyandotte also had to cancel in-person classes due to the Coronavirus. However, the school is handling the situation a little bit differently. Before the recent shut down, the high school was having “Blue and Gold days.” They split the high school up alphabetically into groups. Students were either part of the blue or gold group. The blue group would attend on Monday and Thursday and the gold group would attend Tuesday and Friday. Now, after the recent lockdown, Wyandotte is having online classes for every day of the week and they are having asynchronous learning on Wednesdays. Wyandotte student, Lucie Gripp, expressed her opinion on the situation by stating, “Wyandotte is handling the pandemic very well in my opinion. As someone who has been directly affected by the virus and lost a family member to it, the Wyandotte staff has been nothing but understanding with students during these times.” The school staff are being supportive and understanding to students is crucial during the pandemic. 

Figuring out the best way to keep students both learning and safe has certainly been a challenge this year, but each district is trying to do their best under difficult circumstances, and hopefully can learn what is and is not working from each other during this time.