The Gray Area: Spring…Break? Stay?


Blake Catlett

SPRING…BREAK? STAY? — Grayson Catlett sits and enjoys the sun at home (not a crowded Florida beach).

Grayson Catlett, Columnist

One of the most anticipated moments of the school year is here. Spring break, when students use vacations, parties, or other means to refresh themselves for the home stretch of the school year, will begin for Hamilton County on the day following this article’s publication. As a senior, this spring break feels especially crucial. In spite of my waning motivation and senioritis coming into full swing, a simple, one-week break might just be enough to give me the energy to finish strongly.

However, the break has come to the forefront of controversy in Florida, where partygoers and tourists have been cracked down upon after causing a rise in statewide cases for adults under 50 years of age, although not an overall increase for the whole population. The continuation of the pandemic begs multiple questions for the exciting time. How should students use this spring break? Should they be more reserved when it comes to their plans? Will this break see a spike in COVID-19 across the county, or will the rapid distribution of vaccinations result in a standstill for new cases?

“If everyone were to stop taking risk as a factor, then everyone could catch it and spread it all over again,” said Senior Marshall Sims. “I do think people should be more careful because, even though the numbers are going down, it’s difficult to keep them down when everyone gets so careless.”

Senior Kassy Griffith is similarly concerned about the increase of traveling that spring break begets, even during the current state of things.

I think people should take precaution with where they are traveling and check the case numbers,” she explained. “I’m hoping that everything will proceed normally due to the vaccine, but a decent amount of the travelers aren’t getting it, so the chance of [cases] spiking is an option.”

Both Griffith and Sims said that they will be staying at home and working for the break.

Traveling is not necessarily bad during this time; students have reached a well-deserved break, especially in such an odd school year, and they deserve to have a nice break, no matter what (reasonable!) boundaries come with it. Along with that, though, students, their friends, and their families should be wary of the circumstances of the pandemic. The ‘States may see the light at the end of the tunnel, but we are absolutely not in it yet, especially as some states are seeing their daily cases trend upward.

For those staying in and going out for the break, stay safe! I am tired of these restrictions, and I know you are, too, so hopefully sticking to guidelines and keeping awareness should help us eliminate those, just in time for the summer.