COVID-19 Affecting Students

BY CANDELA RODRIGUEZ

KONK LIFE STUDENT WRITER

Ever since the pandemic started, the Keys have been on the edge. Schools have closed down to prevent more cases, including Key West High School (KWHS). Some students have shared their feelings about this situation. 

Before the Coronavirus struck, the thought of waking up early for school was a challenge for many, but now, students want to have that feeling back. The pandemic has made students look forward to getting out again. “I feel as if I’ve been restricted from my freedom,” says Elias Oquendo, a sophomore at KWHS.

Nikola Denisenko, a freshman at KWHS, also shared her thoughts. “I’m scared for the future because of the virus.” The virus has made many students feel anxious to hear what is going to happen next. “The future is unknown, and most people are afraid of the unexpected,” Elias mentions. 

KWHS has also started online learning, along with other schools in the district. Some students enjoy it, while others are having trouble engaging. “It’s more tedious to sit down all day and be restricted to looking at a screen all morning,” says Elias. Although online learning might be tiresome to some, it is still keeping the students safe and on track.

Additionally, the restrictions caused by the virus affects the students both physically and mentally. “I’m eating too much due to stress from staying inside,” states Nikola, and when she can go outside, she notes, “All I can do is tan in my small backyard.” 

Quarantining is also difficult with peer interaction. “Mentally, it’s slowly hurting me. I miss seeing my friends,” states Elias. Accomplishing social distancing is important, and it is opening the eyes of many students to the importance of school activities. “Personally, I’ve lost the drive to do physical activities, due to only being able to ride my bike,” mentions Elias.

Many students have changed their point of view during quarantine. Students have been excited thinking about what they are going to do after it has ended. “Once the pandemic is over, I’m going to invite some of my friends who have cabin fever to hang out and just have a good time. Maybe even order pizza,” says Elias.

There are many resources for the community when it comes to mental health during this difficult time. For students, the Crisis Text Line is to text “HOME” to 741741, and the Guidance Care Center’s Mobile Response Team can be reached at 305-434-7660 option 8. For all ages, the Suicide Hotline is 1-800-273-TALK (8255), and the Helpline of the Keys is 211. Anyone facing mental difficulties is encouraged to reach out to someone who can help.

Photo provided: Elias Oquendo, a sophomore at KWHS, is working on his school work at home due to the pandemic.