LHS teachers chime in on the pandemic


Photo by Aung Htoo

Kimberly Pickering teaches Economics in the remote plan, with some in person students and some remote students.

On Monday, Feb. 1, LPS seniors were given the option to return to school after being on the A/B plan for most of the 2020-2021 academic year. Additionally, the state of Nebraska has allowed less restrictions giving stores and restaurants a higher maximum capacity.

This shows that restrictions are being decreased throughout the state in various ways which begs the question, what’s the current status of the pandemic?

Two LHS teachers have given insight on what has been happening and what to do to prepare for the future.

LHS economics teacher Kimberly Pickering said Covid-19 has affected incomes and people’s ability to buy necessities, “People losing their jobs may have lost the only source of income for the household.”

Pickering also suggests that they would have to rely on government assistance, such as unemployment insurance and food programs.

There are various factors that affect our ability to move forward out of the pandemic. “It will hinge on people’s willingness to get vaccinated,” Pickering said. “We need 75-80 percent of the population to get vaccinated to start to see any sense of normalcy.”

Not only is money affected, but the population has also just experienced a confusing and conflicting time due to the pandemic. Pickering said, “We have all been through very traumatic times. I think we need to expect to really ramp up mental health supports. We don’t have near what we will need moving forward.”

LHS human behavior teacher Lydia Cotton also mentions grief and how we have all experienced loss in the last year. “But grief does not have to be a bad emotion, it can be something that we grow from and can teach us to appreciate life and the chances we have with one another.” Cotton said.

Humans are innately social, making the pandemic hard for some of people to cope with. Cotton said, “People naturally need relationships, even if they are something as simple as being in the same room as others or exposed to light conversation.”

Cotton also mentions that when something is out of her control, she doesn’t stress about it because she can’t do anything about it. She also believes in self care, Cotton said, “What I can do is take care of myself, do what I can to make others safe, and enjoy the time in my day when I get to be around other people.” Both Pickering and Cotton believe that mental health needs to be taken care of while we move towards the future.