Recent rainfall drenches Carlmont in doubt

Benches+at+Carlmont+before+school+are+wet+from+previous+rain.+When+I+got+to+school+on+Friday%2C+it+was+rainy%2C+and+I+was+looking+for+somewhere+to+sit+and+noticed+that+there+were+no+benches+that+werent+wet%2C+said+Aaron+Jedrzejeck%2C+a+sophomore+at+Carlmont.+

Ethan Kam

Benches at Carlmont before school are wet from previous rain. “When I got to school on Friday, it was rainy, and I was looking for somewhere to sit and noticed that there were no benches that weren’t wet,” said Aaron Jedrzejeck, a sophomore at Carlmont.

Given the recent surge of rainfall in the Bay Area over the past week, students at Carlmont High School are starting to express their worry about the rainy day accommodations on campus.

Headlines regarding California’s record rainfalls are popping up all over the news. With up to 16.55 inches of rain in some areas, students at Carlmont are beginning to worry about how future rain may affect them during the school day.

With students already three months into the school year, many have gotten into the same habitual routine during lunch of finding a regular lunch spot, whether on the bleachers, in the quad, or on other parts of campus, eating and talking with friends. And due to the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations prohibit students from eating inside classrooms and other indoor facilities.

This proves challenging for students when it rains. However, vice principal Grant Steunenberg explained how eating outside during rainy days may not necessarily be the case. 

“Students can actually eat indoors inside school hallways during the rain, but everyone really should be 6 feet apart. We were also looking into opening up the main gym to have students eat inside,” Steunenberg said.

In detailing eating plans at school, the SMCOE Pandemic Recovery Framework suggests distance space between students should be maximized as much as possible, especially when indoors. However, Steunenberg advocates only this should happen only during necessary times such as rainy days.

With around 2,200 high school students on the Carlmont campus, regulating and enforcing all COVID guidelines already proves challenging to faculty and staff. This may prove even more challenging when moving into indoor facilities with even stricter COVID-19 guidelines.

“Even though we are allowed to eat inside during rainy days, I’m still worried that people will get too close to their friends and not follow COVID-19 regulations,” said Peyton Ting, a junior. 

Like many other schools in the nation, students before the COVID-19 pandemic were able to eat anywhere on the Carlmont campus. However, due to COVID-19 restrictions, campus lunch areas have become much more limited.

Steunenberg is hopeful that normalcy is on the horizon, even sharing plans to build a tent-like overhang on campus to give students a more covered space for eating lunch and hanging out.

But right now, Steunenberg is still worried.

“Even with our plan for rainy day accommodations, it would be tough for us to enforce and monitor everyone. It is what it is,” Steunenberg said.

Even with our plan for rainy day accommodations, it would be tough for us to enforce and monitor everyone. It is what it is.”

— Grant Steunenberg