Almost One Year Since School Normalcy


Brodie Curtsinger

Senior Brynna Crump sitting in a classroom, social distancing, with her mask on. Ever since Mar. 13, 2020, we have had to do school either by zoom calls, just online, or by being in person, with very specific rules. “After all this time, I have found many things that I don’t like about online learning. I like the plan we have with hybrid, right now, though, as much as I can,” Crump said, “Missing out on things makes me feel so upset. These are things that we’ve all been looking forward to, as long as we can remember. I hope we can still salvage some of them, before the year is over.”

Brodie Curtsinger, Sports Editor

Seems like forever ago.

It has been quite some time, since any Bullitt County Public Schools, have had a normal day. 

It has been a year since the last normal day of school. Principal Chris Mason misses the time of in-person learning, along with choir teacher Carrie Gary. Senior Brynna Crump is sad that her senior year is being affected like it is.

March13, 2020 was the last day for Bullitt County Public Schools students, where they went to school, could sit next to people, work together, not have to wear masks, and not have to social distance. For the past year, students have been doing school either by Zoom calls, just online, or by being in person, with rules. Some of these rules include: you must wear your mask the whole time, except at lunch, and you must be social distancing. 

Last year, seniors weren’t able to have the ending to their last year of school that they have always been looking forward to. Now, it looks as if this year’s seniors will not be able to have a very normal ending to their school year. Speaking of the end of the year, last year’s school year was shortened by a couple of weeks, due to the fact that typically the last few days would be spent doing finals, or studying, but there were no finals at the end of the school year.

In early May, the students thought that they had a chance of going back to school, but after the message stating that they will not be going back to in-person school, during the school year, of 2019-2020. Before this message, they had hoped to go back April 20, 2020, but that day was cancelled. Within the same message of the plan to come back April 20, being cancelled, was a plan for them to come back May 4, 2020, but that day was then cancelled, causing Bullitt County Public Schools students, and teachers, to not be able to go back to school, during that school year. 

Mason has had to overcome some challenges, throughout this time of online learning. “There have been several challenges to overcome. It’s been extremely difficult to make decisions that are best for everyone. We have such a great team at BEHS, and have done the best we can to do,” Mason said, “As a leader you just have to show up and lead. Most of our students, staff, and parents, have been understanding.” Mason has had to follow, “CDC, and state guidelines, when planning out school events, and that has been a challenge.”

Mason saw the online experience, as a, “a challenge for students, and staff.” He was never planning on the online learning experience to last this long. “Wasn’t really sure this was going to last this long; was planning on getting students back in school much sooner,” Mason said. Mason was “very unsure” of how it would affect the students and staff. Throughout 27 years of education, Mason has never gone through anything like this. 

Until after Sprimg Break, Mason wasn’t sure if we would be doing remote learning the rest of the school year, last year, or not. “Really wasn’t sure until after spring break. At that point, it became apparent that we would be finishing the year remotely,” Mason said. Mason sees the hybrid schedule as the closest thing we’ve had to normal school, in months, and he believes, “it is great to, at least, have students back in our hallways.”

Mason misses a few things, from back when in-person learning was ‘common.’ “Strong relationships between students and staff. I really miss the personal interactions,” Mason said, “It’s been a challenge, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. We have to continue to hang in there, and stay positive.” Mason notices the fact that it’s been a challenge, but he hopes that everyone can continue to stay positive.

Gary has had to overcome some challenges, as the choir teacher, throughout this time of non-traditional learning. “The fact that we are labeled a, ‘Super Spreader.’ Early in the pandemic, there was a very widely publicized news story, out of Washington state, where there were many people sickened, and even some fatalities, because of a choir rehearsal. That responsibility is so terrifying. I want to do what I love, but I also want to be as safe as possible,” Gary said. 

Gary has noticed that students of this year will be missing out on the overall music choral experience, to some extent. “Almost everything that is a part of the choral music experience. When we were online, it was very difficult to learn music, and come together, to actually create the music. Finally being back in class, and learning songs, is nice. It is difficult with the precautionary measures, but doable. The glimmer of hope provided by the announcement of graduation, and by the idea of a Spring Concert, however brief it will need to be, has made life bearable again,” Gary said. 

The last day of school, for her last year, was quite sad. “It was very sad. At that point, I would never have believed that we would not have come back at all, but I was sad. I was sad that we were not going to be together with students. that I have been with, for four years in choir,” Gary said, “trying to be an authentic teacher was more difficult. For the end of last year, I really just wanted to be a mental health check for my choir kids. I wanted them to know someone was there, that cared about them. We would log on, and play games, and just talk.” Gary’s mindset going into NTI, was that she would try to make the best out of it, that she could.

Gary was hoping that remote learning would not continue the rest of the school year, last year. “I did not even consider that (we would not be going back to school, at all, last year), at first. Then, the longer we were out, the more evident it became, that we were done. I really missed that closure with my seniors,” Gary said. Gary does see the hybrid schedule as the closest thing we’ve had to normal school, in a while.

Gary misses a couple of things, which includes literally just getting to sing. “I have a video of the choir just being silly, and singing one or our songs in a circle; just singing and having a great time. I miss that. It was from early February 2020, and I shared it when I came around in ‘Timehop,’ and my 2020 seniors all reached out to me, and said, ‘We took so much for granted’,” Gary said, “It is difficult. It will get better. There is an end, in sight, and while it may not be normal, by 2020 standards, anytime soon, baby-steps to singing as a group again, keep me going.” Gary believes that we are slowly getting closer, to normal, again. 

Crump is sad that she, along with other seniors, are missing out on so much this year. “Missing out on things makes me feel so upset. These are things that we’ve all been looking forward to, as long as we can remember. I hope we can still salvage some of them, before the year is over,” Crump said, “I considered it slightly, but never expected it to carry on this long. Realizing every month that it is still going on, is so surreal.” Crump didn’t really think that the experience of online learning would affect them, just like last year’s seniors. 

Crump’s mindset going into NTI, was a little bit of excitement. “I was a little excited. It seemed like an easy break, from the everyday rush of constant in-person school. I felt a bit unsure, but definitely open-minded to the idea,” Crump said, “After all this time, I have found many things that I don’t like about online learning. I like the plan we have with hybrid, right now, though, as much as I can.” Although, after now having to do it for almost a year, she has noticed negatives that have come from online learning. 

Crump just saw the online learning experience turning out not so good. “I saw the experience turning into something so monotonous. and difficult for everyone. The smartest of students I know, have been struggling so much, especially me,” Crump said.

It took a while for Crump that there would be no more normal school, the rest of the year, last year. “It finally sunk in, after a while, that we wouldn’t be coming back, because it kept being pushed back. I knew they were trying their best, but coronavirus would ultimately make the decision,” Crump said, ”I do think being on hybrid is the closest we’ve gotten to normal. I like this schedule, and I think it is our best option, considering the reality we live in.” Crump sees the hybrid schedule as something kind of close to normal school, in a while.

Crump is missing a few things, such as Halloween in the Halls. “Last school year, I remember taking selfies with my friends, that I still cherish. We could actually smile in them, and I’m glad I got so many while I could. I miss doing Halloween In The Halls, and I wish I would have known it would be my last time doing it. We all had so much fun working together,” Crump said, “I’d like to say that I’m so proud of everyone, for dealing with these tough times; it really does feel like one thing after another. Every student needs to know that their efforts are being recognized, and we all understand what it feels like to struggle, right now. None of us are alone.” 

Read more about the events of the year of 2020, in our recently published magazine, here: