Sophomore Class transitions to the high school during a pandemic

Students attend school without setting foot on a new campus


Mary Wadner

Distant Fan: The yellow/gold T-shirt represents the Sophomore color. Sophomore year has proven to be more challenging than everyone thought through distance learning. It has been no easy feat for sophomores to navigate high school on an online platform. “Take advantage of everything your teacher offers you right now,” Guidance Counselor Amy Wiklund said.

Online learning hasn’t been the easiest for students during COVID-19. Many students have missed out on school spirit, have not been able to connect with friends and family, and have been stuck inside their homes. Sophomores at Lake Stevens High School have really suffered the brunt of this pandemic. Since sophomores are new to our school, it makes their transition to the high school extra challenging.
Sophomores haven’t had the same experiences as juniors and seniors who may have known or known of their teachers before the first day of classes.

“Since everything is online right now, the biggest “change” for me has been meeting new teachers and seeing some unfamiliar faces in my classes,” sophomore Alyssa Copiaco said. “I’m sure the effect would be much larger if classes were in-person, but since we’re in a virtual environment, the “transition” has only felt like a transition in name, not in spirit,” Copiaco said.
The sophomores haven’t had much of the transition that they normally would have if there were no pandemic. In previous years, there has been a Link Day reserved for the incoming sophomores to be introduced to the Viking Drumline, given a campus tour and taught the Viking cheers at an assembly to set the tone for the year. However, for the 2020-2021 school year, that wasn’t the case.

“I know the staff and students at LSHS did their best in unfavorable circumstances to make our transition a memorable experience. For example, assigning us sophomores Link Leaders to conduct a mini-orientation for us in small groups, but the process just felt like the conventional moving-up-a-grade,” Copiaco said. “Even though we sophomores graduated from Cavelero and entered into the high school, I certainly didn’t have that “pizzazz” feeling that comes with a high school transition.”

This pandemic has proven to extinguish some of the Viking pride, but the staff and link leaders have helped students like Copiaco find their way in our school in the best way they can.

“The hardest part would probably be that I don’t get the connection of kids or the easy stop-by’s of kids,” Guidance Counselor Amy Wiklund said.

The high school counselors have been doing everything in their power to support our sophomore class. “Every counselor has a whole bunch of available appointment banks that kids can sign up for,” Wiklund said.
The staff at the high school has been helpful in providing guidance for sophomores during the pandemic. Even though sophomores are facing the pandemic, the high school is performing at its best to help its students. Staff, teachers, counselors, and all the admin are working endlessly to provide as much as they can.
The counseling department has changed to best fit the time this world is facing. Unfortunately, sophomores haven’t had the grand welcome that a normal beginning of the school year would have. It is not the same, no matter what kind of opportunities there may be online for Viking pride.
Sophomores have had their own struggles with starting up at the high school, but have been overcoming that with the help of the Lake Stevens High School staff. Maneuvering the current experience has required flexibility.
Wicklund believes that the sophomores of the school year 2020-2021 will be okay going into their junior year from an online school in the fall.
“If [sophomores] take advantage of what their teachers are offering, I think they’ll be just fine. Frankly, I think they will be a little bit better off because now they understand the Google meets and the Google Classroom and they’re a little more prepared for things other than just coming to class, doing what the teacher says, and going home,” Wiklund said.