Kennett Returns to Full-Time In-Person Learning

At the time of my writing this, Kennett has made it through a little more than 1 week of full, in-person learning 5 days a week. In my book, it’s been successful in a few ways, albeit it has not gone so well in a few others. Often, the two seem to overlap.

On a positive note, social distancing has been manageable, all things considered. While I have personally found traffic jams at points like the end of the S-wing and certain staircases at the front of the building, generally people distance themselves to the best of their ability. Mask wearing has also been far better than I ever would have expected, save for a few individuals who seem to forget that masks need to cover both the mouth and the nose.

Lunch has also been relatively successful, especially given that a socially distanced and COVID-safe lunch was likely a very difficult challenge for school administrators. The plexiglass and assigned seats are annoying, but clearly very important given that students have their masks off while eating.

While this is all well and good, it seems like the school’s COVID cases are already rising. I personally already received a notice that I may have been briefly exposed to someone with the virus, but (credit here to social distancing and mostly good mask-wearing) I was not identified as a close contact and required to quarantine—some of my classmates haven’t been so lucky. It seems like overall, the school’s contract tracing has been an effective system. Hopefully, the school will not be forced to temporarily close, but it is a possibility that we should all be prepared for.

Despite the obvious problems that will arise, many see the return as a welcome sign of the pandemic’s end. It is already clear that many students prefer in-person learning, as can be seen in the amount that returned to the building. Moving forward, as vaccination statistics start to climb within the building, both among students and teachers, hopefully we will be able to return maskless or at least with all students by the start of the next school year.

One key step in that process is, of course, getting vaccinated yourself. All people 16 and up are now eligible to receive at least the Pfizer vaccine, and it is imperative that as many students as possible get the shot if they hope to return to normal. More information on how to register can be found at the official website of the Chester County Health Department at

— Martin Heintzelman