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How Is COVID-19 Affecting High School Students?

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on students of all ages. We discuss the many ways in which high schools students have been affected.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, getting closer and closer to the one-year mark, many families are looking back and wondering how it has impacted their children. Months of isolation, canceled events, and schooling changes must impact students, and high school students who are expecting something out of their high school careers are particularly vulnerable. What is the impact of the pandemic on high schoolers, and how can families lessen the impact as they move forward this school year? Here is a closer look at the facts.

School Closures Disrupt Daily Life

One impact of the pandemic on high school students is that of school closures. School closure disrupts the daily routine and structure of these students. It also has a tremendous impact on their social life, which is often built around school and school activities. Without daily interaction with their peers, students fail to build the friendships that are common in this time of life.

Other Social Outlets Out of Reach

In addition to schools being closed, movie theaters, shopping malls, and local restaurants have also closed or limited their capacity in light of the pandemic. This impacts high school students in two ways. First, these are common social outlets for teenagers. They are the places they go to hang out with their friends, and now they are no longer accessible. Second, these are common places for high schoolers to get their first jobs, and limited capacities or closures mean job opportunities are less abundant.

Students Facing Tremendous Anxiety

Another impact of COVID-19 on high school students is the fear and anxiety of the pandemic. Students may fear catching the virus or losing a loved one to it. In a COVID Impact Survey performed in April of 2020, 60% of US teens reported worry about a non-parental family member getting sick, and 59% indicated anxiety about a parent or guardian getting sick. Only 10% indicated they had no concern about COVID-19.
Some may fear that life will never return to normal. Juniors and seniors fear that they will not have a "normal" senior year with the big events like prom and homecoming that many look forward to. These unknowns create a general feeling of anxiety, and dealing with that anxiety for months on hand has a negative impact on students, leading to problems with depression.

High Schoolers Feel Less Prepared for College

Sadly, many high school students are reporting that they do not plan to attend college or feel unprepared for college as a result of the pandemic and its impact on their education. In a recent survey, 32% of high school seniors reported that the pandemic reduced the likelihood that they would enroll in college, and 40% indicated they did not plan to enroll in college because of the pandemic. Many reported fear that they are falling behind because of online learning.

Boarding School May Help Concerned High School Students

These concerns about the impact of COVID-19 are legitimate. High school students who crave a normal high school experience feel robbed, and the rush to online learning is making it harder for them to gain the academic skills they need as well. Boarding schools can alleviate some of these concerns. When students live and learn on the same campus, learning does not have to be disrupted quite as severely due to the pandemic. This helps maintain a sense of normalcy as students gain education and move forward with life in spite of the pandemic.

Riverside Military Academy is a private school in the greater Atlanta area (Gainesville, GA) that teaches young men in grades 7 through 12 with a college preparatory focus within a military model of education. Students who crave a more rigorous challenge and who can benefit from the structure of a boarding school find that the structure, focus, active learning, and freedom from distractions at Riverside Military Academy are a good fit for their needs. Schedule a private tour today to see if it is the right fit for your middle or high school student.
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