… So No Lockdown?
November 6, 2020
On Wednesday the 28th of October, the federal government had a meeting to decide the fate of Switzerland in these difficult times, and one of the decisions to be made was whether schools should stay open or revert to remote-learning. The anticipation leading up to this meeting was high within our community. The opinions on this matter were extremely split: some people wanted to stay at school and some people wanted to have online learning again. The government ended up deciding that a lockdown was not going to be enforced, and the responses from the ISL student body has been very mixed.
There seems to be no consensus on this issue. Wanting to have remote learning, an anonymous student said that they would “rather be in school”, but “looking at it in terms of my safety and other peoples, I’m not exactly happy about it”. Student A expressed that by going back into remote-learning they would be “more at peace and wouldn’t feel like [they were] putting anyone at risk”. However, they later stated that “being at school makes everything seem more normal right now”, and that they found comfort in that.
A Year 12 student, student B shared a similar opinion in that they think schools should have shut down. The reason for this is that they believe “the decision wasn’t taken to satisfy the needs of the people, but rather the economy”. They made this statement because “we’re running out of beds and space for people in the hospitals… so at the end of the day we have to recognize the people over anything”. Student B believes a two-week lockdown for now would help improve the situation and stop the exponential increase in numbers. Additionally, they stated that for IB students it is less than ideal academically for us to learn at home, but that lockdown is inevitable given the rate of infection.
While there is a large part of the student body represented in this sentiment, there are also some students who are glad that schools are staying open for now. Another student (student C) disclosed that after the first two weeks of the first lockdown, “[their] mental health started declining” and that it was a difficult situation to be in since they “didn’t know how to deal with it”. Multiple other students faced similar challenges which is understandable given this unprecedented situation we are currently living through. Student B also offered some advice for people who struggled during the first lockdown, should a second one ever occur. They mentioned moving around and not only staying in one room could be useful, also planning lunches and calls with friends in order to keep the social aspect which we get from going to school intact, which that lacks during online-learning. Although student C did not want another lockdown to occur, they mentioned that they don’t feel safe being at school currently given the increasing number of cases.
A student in year 13 added that they “personally don’t think that going into lockdown would be very beneficial for students within the DP” as the March-June lockdown caused learning to be significantly harder than when in school. Understanding the course content is crucial for students in the IB, and that is harder when learning isn’t face-to-face. This student believes that we can find more ways to avoid going back to online learning as a community.
It seems that the student body is quite divided on this issue. With any matter this complex and multifaceted, differences in opinion and perspectives are bound to happen. There are positives and negatives to both outcomes, but at the end of the day, the only way the situation will improve is if we all work together to fight against this pandemic.