The Back to School Picnic was the First In-Person Event Since the Pandemic Began

As cheer sponsor Jeff Bivins’ voice echoed through the football field speakers, the sidelines were filled with hugs and laughter as the school was reunited for the first time since the COVID outbreak.

Students, parents, administrators and members of the community attended the Back to School Picnic along with every school club and organization.

The previous year’s picnic was not possible given the circumstances surrounding COVID- 19, making the event the first full school gathering since March of 2020. Once the CDC approved outdoor gatherings, the administration didn’t hesitate in deciding to host the event.

For over a year, performance groups like the Eaglettes missed out on the opportunity to present for a crowd as large as the Back to School Picnic gathering.

“Being in front of a crowd is so much fun, like literally it’s so exciting and overjoying,” junior Eaglette Kaiya Ragoobir said. “There is so much adrenaline inside of you that you are so excited to be in front of them and make them smile. Since COVID happened we didn’t have these gatherings, and now that we are having one, it was really exciting.”

The pandemic made it difficult for students to connect with each other at school functions with the restrictions put in place the previous year. Many students’ mental health was negatively affected due to the lack of interaction during quarantine and virtual learning.

“You get to see everybody, and I miss everybody,” junior Xaria Latham said. “It’s like a more positive vibe being with a lot more people that you love and care about.”

Principal Chris Choat said prior to the event that he held a meeting with the teachers to discuss the potential difficulties they would face having everyone back. He reassured the staff that they would make it through the year, even with the challenges they’d encounter.

“That’s what I talked to our teachers about – just stick together, and we’ll make it,” he said.