By Patrick O’Neill ‘23
On March 12, 2020, Governor Mike Dewine officially announced that all K-12 schools in Ohio would shift to virtual learning. Beginning on March 16, 2020, the virtual learning switch was only supposed to last until April 3, 2020. Yet, as we all know, this aspiration did not go according to plan. Spring sports and Prom were canceled. Meanwhile, other events, such as graduation, Chariot Races, and the spring musical, were restructured, rescheduled, or both. Students and teachers had to finish the school year on Zoom and pray that they could safely return to campus the following year.
Now, almost a full year later, teachers, students, and faculty are preparing for the return of a full-day schedule and the entire student body due to the administration of COVID. As more vaccines are distributed throughout the Saint Ignatius community, a sense of normalcy seems to be on the horizon. Yet, even with a regained sense of normalcy, questions remain. Will a full student body allow for some social events, such as Prom, to be planned and executed?
In an interview, Senior Class President, Jackson Sonnhalter revealed that “Prom will happen and masks will be worn. We have secured a location and a back-up location.” Sonnhalter continued by stating, “We are awaiting the governor’s directions next week to determine the best location to best follow required protocols and give our seniors a deserved special event to celebrate their four years. We have not chosen a theme, yet, but that is also on the agenda for March.” Although it appears to still be in the early stages of development, rest assured that Prom is an imminent, central focus for Sonnhalter and the rest of the Student Senate.
Similarly, Mr. Yandek, one of the moderators for the senior class, said this when asked if Senior Prom was slowly coming together: “As of this moment, the administration and senior class moderators are committed to hosting a prom in some form for the Class of 2021. We are examining our options to host a prom that is both safe and inclusive for all members of the Class of 2021 who want to attend.” Mr. Yandek went on to state, “I can’t see us hosting an event at which masks would not be worn. We are still in the midst of a global pandemic. We are awaiting a formal announcement from Governor DeWine, who indicated last week that information regarding proms was imminent.”
After a year full of cancellations and reorganization, the upcoming Prom will provide a well-deserved celebration for this year’s senior class. For all of the seniors worrying whether or not they will get to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime event, fear no longer because Prom will happen.