'It kind of hurts a lot': Students, parents react to schools remaining closed

SEATTLE – The state announcement on school closures for the remainder of the academic year was expected, but it was still hard to hear for high school seniors.

“It kind of hurts a lot actually,” said Emily Goodman, a senior at Franklin High School in Seattle.

Goodman is part of the cheerleading team, and said she misses her friends.

“For my whole life I’ve been looking forward to my senior year, graduation, prom and it kind of sucks not being able to get that. A lot of my friends already have their dresses, and it’s like dang what’re we going to do now? Have these dresses and we can’t even wear them?”

High school senior Willow Le Hew is dozens of miles away in Gig Harbor. She has a beautiful gown hanging in her closet.

“The top half has like rhinestones. It’s silver and the bottom half is a flowing black skirt,” said Willow. “Prom is something I’ve been looking forward to since I was in fifth grade. Maybe younger. I’ve had my dress for over a year now.”

Governor Jay Inslee made the announcement on Monday, saying it’s to continue the fight against Covid-19 from spreading in the community.

It’s raising many questions for families with children of all ages. Some parents facing the challenging of not having adequate access to the internet, and others wondering if learning over a screen is sufficient.

Willow’s mom Rachel is also a parent to a first grader, a sixth grader and a freshman in high school.

“We’ve had a lot of time playing in the yard. A lot of time doing school work at home,” said Rachel Le Hew. “How many kids nowadays are graduating and don’t know how to write a check, don’t know how to change the oil, don’t know how to cook food? This gives us as parents the opportunity to teach them that.”

Families across the state are hoping to have celebrations for their high school seniors once this is all said and done.

“Maybe we can have a big giant party when all this is done for the seniors,” said Rachel.