Following biosecurity protocols due to the Covid-19 pandemic has been an exhausting experience for both students and staff during this semester after coming back to school on a full basis.
TCS staff has worked hard to ensure the safety of the school’s community by implying protocols such as mask usage and social distancing. Actions to minimize the risk of . guaranteed that students could return to school safely. It was left up to them to be conscious and follow these protocols to protect classmates and peers.
“For me, it has been easy to follow the protocols, I feel that even with a mask on, everybody can hear me and understand the instructions during class. It is really about being aware of the necessity, our own and others’ safety,” Erika Atehortua, 12th-grade teacher, said.
Although these protocols were well thought, some students continue to struggle to follow them. Various students have to be told to put their masks back on or fix them so they are put on correctly, covering their nose and mouth.
“I think that after many students got vaccinated, people relaxed a little too much,” Pascual Cardozo, a 10th-grade student, said, “but, I genuinely believe that teachers and staff are doing a good job managing the situation.”
Inside the classroom, desks are placed separately and windows are kept open to reduce the amount of Covid-19 particles. Likewise, during the window and lunch, supervisors such as directives and teachers constantly continue to remind students to sit in the permitted spaces in the cafeteria.
“It has been hard making the students follow the protocols, especially because we have turned to threaten students into following them,” Karol Viviana Marin, 10th-grade teacher said, “Also, in the shoes of an educator, I have to bring awareness to a large group of teenagers that this situation is really how it is portrayed in the media or even worse. There is not that collective conscience.”
Understandably, wearing a mask can be uncomfortable for some people, breathing can become more difficult and some masks can hurt parts of your face. However, wearing a mask is one of the very limited list of ways to prevent the spread of the virus and to protect the most vulnerable from it.
“Following the biosecurity protocols has been easy for me, wearing a mask is not uncomfortable. Honestly, I believe I am very conscious of the protocols, I constantly wash my hands and wear a mask,” Cardozo said
With the return to school, a teacher’s job has changed. As of now, they don’t only have to teach, they have to be committed to ensuring that the students stay safe on school grounds.
“One of the hardest parts of coming back is that our job is just not only being educators. Instead, we have become more like the security guards of the pandemic,” Marin said, “It is very tiring to keep on telling a student to put their mask on correctly, wash their hands, don’t share the water, that is truly exhausting.”