The Effects of Covid on Clubs in The 2020-2021 School Year
September 28, 2020
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and changes within the CFISD learning system, our school has had multiple conflicts arise. One of these many grievances include the continuation of clubs and their events. This year, clubs are adjusting to the circumstances, keeping members safe while participating as active members in their clubs.
Clubs that require in-person events and competitions, such as Key Club, Science Olympiad, TSA, Model UN, and FBLA, are particularly affected this year.
Key Club, for instance, has had to limit the availability of the number of events and opportunities for members this year. Members can participate in activities that members can do remotely or in small groups to remain safe, while communicating through Google Classroom. Key Club will be using the online platform as a way to reach out to members about the club and upcoming opportunities, instead of holding in-person meetings.
“I think it makes it incredibly stressful, especially on Key Club, who’s entire orientation is on working together and being engaged in our community affairs,” says Key Club President Christian Gamez. “So, it’s certainly no small feat, but we, as always, can overcome those obstacles.”
Science Olympiad, on the other hand, has decided to move entirely online for at least the fall semester. They will not be holding in-person events, such as competitions and member socials, in the hope to keep every participant safe. As an alternative, they are planning to host Zoom and/or Discord meetings, socials, and game nights in order to make sure all members are engaged and having fun.
“Many clubs have physical aspects, such as volunteering or constructing something, which cannot be carried over to online,” says Science Olympiad Captain Daniella Garcia-Loos. “However, I hope that Science Olympiad can still instill the values of collaboration and teamwork onto our members and ensure that we continue to learn about STEM!”
The Technology Student Association (TSA) has decided to move to Zoom for members only, continuing to run meetings in a webinar style, while using breakout sessions with members and officers. Through the limitation of in-person meetings, they are planning on meeting in-person with only the six officers and two advisors.
“We believe that the shift to online for clubs means a chance for clubs to become better,” says TSA President Breylan Bize. “Everything happens for a reason, and we have to be able to adopt to all kinds of new situations. This is just another situation that we’ll turn into an opportunity!”
Similarly, Model United Nations (Model UN) will be holding online meetings, instead of in-person, in order to ensure everyone’s safety. Their largest event of the year, the Houston Area Model United Nations (HAMUN), is usually held in-person, and will most likely be held online this year. In the possibility that participants will be meeting online, Model UN plans on abiding by safety guidelines and restrictions imposed by HAMUN, and safety practices will be encouraged.
“The shift to online means that all clubs will have to sacrifice a part of what makes them special and fun to do, but it also shows how much we value the health of our members, which, in my opinion, is worth that sacrifice.” says Model UN President James Wang.
Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) is still planning on holding in-person meetings through CFISD safety guidelines, while accommodating for online students through the use of Zoom during meetings. As of right now, FBLA’s in-person events are undecided on whether they will still be held. In the event that in-person events will be held, the club will be enforcing safety measures and doubling bus numbers and hotels for participants.
“It’ll be weird to coordinate since some of our officers are online,” says FBLA President Trevin Gatto. “However, we are still getting through it to have FBLA this year. It will take double the planning to make sure that everyone has access to all the information, and to set up for both in-person and online.”
Overall, many clubs have had to go through the shift to online platforms, while some will continue to hold in-person meetings and events. These clubs will be abiding by CFISD safety guidelines, and continue to make sure each member will be connected to the club, whether it be online or in-person.