The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has caused many changes to daily life and the educational environment since the pandemic hit the U.S. last March.
But the impact of COVID-19 is not simply limited to the classroom. High school students are facing challenges this year that have never happened. For most students, school isn’t just about academics, it is also about social interactions. Many students may be asking themselves, “Are we going to have any school dances this year?”
At Saint John’s, many freshman year friendships start by sitting next to each other in class and discussing the upcoming Froshmore Dance.
Addie Breitenbach ‘24 said she was definitely looking forward to froshmore and thought it would be a good way for her to make friends and have fun.
Although she said she is not fully familiar with the details of the dance she said, “I’ve heard that Froshmore is the yearly freshman and sophomore dance. It sounds like a cool way to spend time with friends. My freshman experience has been affected greatly by coronavirus. If everything goes back to normal, I would definitely attend froshmore. I think SJC would make it a safe environment, even in normal circumstances.”
Another dance that was cancelled this year was the Regimental Ball which occurs every year as one of the signature traditions of the St. John’s Cadet Corps and school community. Senior Cadet Corps member Colin Kavanagh said that what makes Regimental Ball so important to him is that it’s one of the only events that we have that’s exclusive to the Cadet Corps and that “there’s something special about all of us being able to dress up and enjoy an event that we actually planned ourselves, rather than an admin planned dance like homecoming.”
He also said that not having the dance this year “really sucks because it’s something that we all look forward to each year, especially as seniors because we have been waiting to walk down the stairs with our dates for four years and now that’s being taken away from us.” He later mentioned that there is talk of possibly having a modified version later in the year. However, he has his doubts due to the strict COVID regulations in D.C.
Fellow senior, Daniel De Lude, said that not having a Regimental Ball this year is “pretty upsetting.” Daniel as well as the other cadet corps members look forward to the Regimental Ball every year. De Lude said, “What makes this ball so special to the cadet corps is the rich tradition it holds. And I’m going to miss seeing friends walk through the sabre tunnel and instructors dance”.
As far as other yearly school dances, like homecoming, Ms. Mac and Mrs. Bell said that, because of the way things are going, there might not be any dances, but there will be some forms of celebrations. As the moderators of the SGA, they said, “Saint John’s bases all of their plans on COVID health requirements, but moving forward, the administration has been working hard to make up for these missed social opportunities with safer alternatives.”