COVID-19 has brought Country Day’s traditional end-of-the-year celebrations to a halt for the second year in a row. The replacements are expected to be small but are not yet official.
In past years, high school students have been able to participate in events such as prom, graduation and the occasional Brooke Wells Cookout. This year, however, gatherings must be limited to smaller groups of people, which leaves little hope for the sudden comeback of these events in their former glory.
Wells had said that Country Day is still waiting for the California Department of Public Health to release the guidelines for graduations to determine the social end of the school year.
California’s color-coded tier system organizes counties based on the average number and percentage of positive COVID-19 cases. Prom is likely to be canceled and graduation will be small, but if the pace remains steady through Spring Break, Sacramento County may move down from the Red Tier into the Orange, opening the possibility of new opportunities.
Wells said that the school is looking at a fairly small in-person graduation for seniors and a few of their close relatives. If the school’s COVID-19 cases remain under control, there’s also the possibility of an outside spring concert by the orchestra with the musicians’ immediate families allowed in the audience.
“It all depends on numbers, and Spring Break is going to be huge,” Wells said, regarding the possibility of another rise in COVID-19 cases. “With the percentage of vaccinations going right now and the number of 16-year-olds going to be vaccinated by mid-April, surely by the fall, we should have a (full) high school and everyone vaccinated.”
At this time of year, Student Council is usually expected to play crucial roles in directing large group gatherings. Student Council would have hosted Prom, helped with graduation and directed team games. Since those are not possible, Student Council has come up with substitutes.
Student Council President Bri Davies has led the activities of the Student Council with Zoom-friendly events such as the Family Feud game on April 2. In an attempt to bring the high school together, the council has been hosting events that let both remote and in-person students interact over video calls. Student Council also hopes to see a continued decrease in tiers so they can host more activities and possibly some in-person events.
While Davies expects more group activities in the future, she wants to see that the end-of-year graduation includes the annual roasts. In past years, teachers would praise individual seniors or would come up with funny skits, joking about their students’ time at Country Day.
“More than anything, I think I would definitely want to see those still happen even if it is over Zoom and not in-person,” Davies said, “I think the skits are definitely what makes Country Day graduation unique and so special.”