As the number of cases of COVID-19 in Long Beach dwindles, the Long Beach Unified School District has begun easing social distancing rules and allowing extracurricular activities to resume.
Barring the fact infections have begun to decline as a result of the widely accessible vaccine, the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) requires all adolescents, over the age of two, and teachers to wear a facial covering while on campus.
Several students and parents have expressed dissatisfaction with the policy; the current LBUSD superintendent, Dr. Jill Baker, and the Board of Education have published “Covid 19 Pandemic: School Opening and Safety Plan,” which thoroughly expands on the misinformation and current safety procedures implemented regarding the required areas where social distancing zones are implemented.
As the 2021-2022 school year progresses, however, high school sports, such as football, appear to be excluded from most of these processes. Outdoor sports, such as cheerleading, baseball, and water polo, have started all practices in preparation for the anticipated resumption of competitions, games, and tournaments. While this is exhilarating to teachers and students alike, many express concern that continuing to engage in seemingly “non-essential” activities would increase infection rates, and the LBUSD may be forced to implement the continuation of online learning.
It may be contended, however, that due to the Pfizer vaccine effectiveness, with a 95 percent success rate, that resuming sporting events is only logical as Long Beach residents don’t want to be trapped in a never-ending cycle of returning to normalcy and reverting to intense social distancing guidelines.
As of October 2021, Long Beach is moving steadily in a progressive direction as residents are encouraged to vaccinate, and transmission rates decrease. High school students believe, as classrooms and neighborhoods return to normalcy, the good shift will continue and they will be able to resume their lives as they were before the pandemic.
By Sofia Youngs