Schools Closed For the Rest of the Year: Underclassmen React

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In the wake of Governor Phil Murphy’s announcement that New Jersey schools will stay closed until the end of the school year, students expressed understanding for his decision but were disappointed nonetheless.

“This is a difficult decision and I know that many students, parents, and staff would like to be able to return to school,” Murphy said in the statement. “However, I have been unwavering on the message that we need to make decisions based on science, not emotion. And while New Jersey is making great strides in mitigating the spread of COVID-19, science tells us that at this point, we can’t safely re-open our schools.”

Even though many students were upset about activities being canceled and not being able to see their friends, many understand why the action of closing schools needed to be done.

“I am disappointed about the decision because I don’t get to see my friends and the softball season is canceled. But overall, I understand that it was the best decision for all our health,” said sophomore Hailey Conklin. 

“It is a deduction that needed to be made to help not only ourselves but the community as a whole,” said sophomore Ryan Lemchek.

Other students are not affected by the decision since they have been online learning for a while now, but mainly feel bad for the seniors who won’t get to do their end of year activities.

Junior Jake Grosjean stated, “Personally, I feel okay with it but I feel awful for the seniors who can’t say their last goodbye to their friends and teachers. It also sucks that spring sports were canceled”.

“I honestly don’t mind as a sophomore; of course I miss my friends and wish I could be in class with my teachers but I truly feel terrible for the seniors. They are missing so much. I couldn’t imagine not having my prom, graduation, etc,” said sophomore Cassandra Witten.

As of right now New Jersey has approximately 135,000 plus cases and nearly 9,000 deaths. 

Even though schools are closed, Murphy opened parks and some golf courses so people can stay active while still social distancing as the weather gets warmer.  Beaches also opened over the weekend, but Murphy cautioned that if people do not abide by social distancing guidelines, he will close them again.