With the Covid-19 pandemic hanging like a big question mark over the school year, The Star polled local students to see how they're feeling about returning to school. In their own words, here are their responses.
"The transition back into school during the pandemic is bittersweet. On one hand, I am looking forward to school social interaction, a part of the educational day that was lost during the complete lockdown. On the other hand, going back to school will be difficult for teens such as myself who have enjoyed autonomy and self-directed learning."
- Jon Kuperschmid, 16, East Hampton High School junior
"I feel that going back to school seems like a big risk, and it does not seem worth it to have a big uptick in cases. I really miss my friends and I can't wait to see them again. Maybe it will be safer in six months?"
- Harry Roussel, 15, Pierson High School sophomore
"I want to go back to school when it is safe. I have asthma and know a lot of kids are not being as safe as they should be, so for now I will be remote learning in a small group with kids that I know are safe."
- Olivia Roussel, 12, Pierson Middle School eighth grader
"I want to go back to school because online school is really boring, and much less engaging than normal school. Plus, personally I feel more inclined to work hard when in-person because it's harder to make up excuses as to why I didn't do homework. But, in regards to returning to school, I feel excited but apprehensive because there are many risks."
- Annabelle Roussel, 12, Pierson Middle School eighth grader
- Eamon Schopfer, 12, East Hampton Middle School
"I am really excited to go back to school in Montauk. Last year was my first year in this school and I really loved it. I came from Ukraine and schools in Ukraine are totally different from what they are in United States. All of my new teachers last year [were] great and I am real thankful for all of the help they gave me. I made many new friends and I can't wait for school to start."
- Vira Palamarchuk, 11, Montauk School seventh grader
- Dennis Ruiz III, 10, John M. Marshall Elementary School
"I feel like we should all be going back because we need some social interaction with other kids. Even if it's just one or two days, it's really important because a) kids are on their screens too much and b) they are dying for social interaction. I also think it's important to go back for fourth and fifth graders because it's the last years of elementary school before we go to a new school."
- Adrie Quinn, 10, Springs School fifth grader
"I'm excited to see my friends. It's nice to see them once in a while even if it's not for long. I like seeing my teachers a lot."
- Saoirse Quinn, 7, Springs School second grader