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Area Students, Parents React To School Closures (Part 1)

Katy Anderson

Schools across Indiana will be closed for the next several weeks to help curb the spread of coronavirus. 

WBOI put out a call on social media asking area students to serve as Youth Correspondents to get their perspective on the global pandemic, and how it's affecting their lives.  

For their first assignment, we asked correspondents to record their personal reactions to their schools being shut down for the next several weeks… and to also get their parents’ take on the situation. 

Kathleen Simunek: Homestead High School, Senior

“When I first found out the school was closing, I wasn’t really surprised because it seemed like the trend that’s been happening all around the world.  But it was still really sad because specifically as a senior there was a lot of stuff I’ve been looking forward to for a really long time and now it won’t ever get to happen.   

I know my parents were sad that school is closing but I also think they were kind of relieved because we know so many people who are high-risk and if there’s less contact between all of us then it’s really better.” 

Quint Lawrence: Covington Elementary School, Fifth Grade 

“When I first found out my school was closing, I felt worried. This is because I was afraid of some of that coming to the head COVID-19. Plus, I hate e-learning too. My mom said that she was worried because closing schools because of an illness has never happened before in her lifetime and it made her realize just how dangerous this virus is.”

Luke Skendaj: Manchester Intermediate School, Fourth Grade

Luke's mother, Meg: “When you first found out your school was closing, how did you feel?”

Luke: “Concerned, and sad.  How did you feel mom?”

Meg: “I had been expecting it to happen for a couple days before it actually did.  So I was not surprised but... –“ 

Luke: “I was surprised.”

Meg: “You were surprised? I will admit I was pretty relieved when I first heard because I thought it was the right thing to do and I think the sooner the better. I was also a little nervous about spending all that time at home together. And I was a little bit excited because I thought about some home schooling or some fun learning stuff that we can do while we were home.”   

Charlotte & Lucy Scott: Croninger Elementary School, First & Third Grades

Charlotte: “When I first found out that my school was closing I felt anxious because of the lip synch show and I wasn’t practicing.”

Lucy: “When I first heard about my school was closing, I felt pretty happy.”

Hillery (Charlotte and Lucy’s mother): “Why?”

Lucy: “Because then I wouldn’t have to like do any stuff like school stuff and I just could play the games on your computer.”

Hillery: “No…Is that what you have been doing?”

Lucy: “Yeah, pretty much. How did you feel?”

Hillery: “How did I feel? Yeah I felt kind of anxious because I wasn’t sure what that was going to look like for who was going to be able to take care of you because your dad and I both work in the hospital. We’re pretty busy right now.”

Gabriel Flotow: St. Paul Lutheran School, Fourth Grade

Gabriel: “When I first found out my school was closing I felt sad because I can’t actually see my friends, I can only talk to them.  Mom, how did you feel?”

Gabriel's mother, Jaqui: “I felt a little bit stressed out and kind of concerned, and very overwhelmed.”

Ian Fraser: Woodside Middle School, Eighth Grade

“When I first found out my school was closing I felt kind of worried mainly because that would mean four weeks of working at home, and for me at least, I work better at school. My parents in general were kind of worried about that as well as that would mean four weeks of having to deal with two children who would’ve normally been at school most of the day.  And my mom is an infectious disease doctor so she is in the front lines of this whole situation and is stressed out in general.”