COVID-19 issues cancel open house despite its importance

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Erin Kee

Some teachers made virtual websites to substitute the open house. “I think canceling the open house was the responsible thing for the school to do,” said Mindy Chiang, the Chinese teacher.

Open house is an event where parents can see their student’s work and progress throughout the school year. This year, the opportunity wasn’t available.

Due to the spreading coronavirus (COVID-19), open house was canceled as all, “non-essential gatherings should be canceled, postponed, or done remotely,” according to the San Mateo County health officer, Scott Morrow.

“We don’t find [open house] essential for the daily operation of school because we have other forms of communication […] It brings a big risk to not only the site and the staff but also the parents,” said Ralph Crame, the principal of Carlmont.

Although open house is deemed unessential by the school administration, many parents and students see otherwise.

“I think it’s pretty essential because, besides Canvas, parents don’t really get a lot of sense about what’s happening,” said Tommy Chin, a sophomore. “The only idea they have of school is when they ask their kid how their day was and get the simple reply, ‘good.’ It’s either that or the letter grade, which can lack the meaning of the school work.”

It brings a big risk to not only the site and the staff but also to the parents.”

— Ralph Crame, principal

Despite what people think, there’s no changing the fact that open house was canceled, and teachers must adapt. Mindy Chiang, the Chinese teacher, decided to create a virtual open house so that parents can still have a look into their child’s school lives.

“Open house is the opportunity for teachers to share with the parents what the students have been doing. When we do projects, we typically have a final product that I keep to show during this time,” Chiang said. “I usually also have activities at open house, but now I can’t do that. So the virtual open house focuses more on the product as well as pictures of activities that we do.”

Typically, open house is also an opportunity for students to volunteer and get extra credit points in the Chinese class. Many students weren’t happy losing these extra points.

“Although it’s a minor detail in the grand scheme of things, the extra credit from open house would have been very beneficial for me in this class. Despite the loss of a little extra boost, I understand why they would cancel open house,” said Kylie Sun, a sophomore.

Overall, although there may have been many losses with the closing of open house, the safety of everyone is at the school’s top priority.

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