Although last year’s fire fiasco led to an unexpected end to the year, the 2019-2020 school year definitely takes the win for the most bizarre turn of events. With the entire student body transferred to a remote, online learning environment for most of the second semester, this year will forever be remembered as one of the most unusual school times for high schoolers across the world, including our own town of Hingham.
For the entire study body and faculty, this change in environment posed a huge new challenge: how to teach and learn without an in-person connection. The unprecedented transition to remote learning engendered a variety of different emotions and opinions as explained in Elle Cavanaugh’s “Virtual Learning Sparks Discussion Amongst HHS Student Body”. While some preferred online courses and others missed the classroom experience, HHS faculty and students have worked hard to overcome the circumstances and continue learning during the necessary shutdown. With the final week of remote classes and the start of summer fast approaching, sophomore Ella Bousquet reflects, “Although this is a very strange way for many students to end their school year, I think that we have all learned a lot from this experience, and will appreciate school more when we are able to go back”. As hard as adjusting to the ‘new normal’ has been, this year has allowed for personal growth and the understanding of many valuable lessons in appreciation and gratefulness of things often taken for granted, such as the privilege of education and the ability to be surrounded by peers in the classroom or on a sports field.
For the class of 2020, this year was the last surrounded by high school friends and the Hingham community. The closure of school led to the cancellation or reschedule of many long-awaited events such as senior prom and graduation. Although these obstacles must have put a damper on the excitement of senior year, many students have put a positive spin on an unfortunate circumstance. Senior Sophia Oomen-Lochtefeld reflects on her recent weeks explaining, “it was hard to realize at first what we were really missing out on and that everything was canceled, so being sad over it came in waves over little things like having to do the GCP symposium over zoom. Now, it’s less sad and more exciting as we start to make socially distant fun memories and get excited to start the next stage of our lives”. As school as we knew it came to an abrupt and unexpected halt on March 12, the seniors experienced many ‘lasts’ such as the last class with their favorite teacher or the last walk from far before they knew it was the end of their time at Hingham High School. However, while the seniors have missed out on some irreplaceable memories, the town has also come together with posters, signs, picture displays, and other celebrations to honor its seniors and all they have done for the community.
As the 2019-2020 year comes to a close with the final weeks of remote learning, we leave you with the best wishes for the summer: to the senior class-best of luck wherever your futures take you, to the incoming freshmen-welcome to Hingham High School, and to everyone in between-see you in the fall!