An open letter for Filipino Students
Dear friends, classmates:
In the days of early January, we students have lived a life you could consider “normal.” From going to school to attend classes, hanging out with friends as after-school dates, to going to church to hear mass and attend other religious activities; we did whatever we wanted without feeling restricted. On January 20, however, that freedom seemed to dissipate into thin air, as the first case of COVID-19 was reported by the Department of Health (DOH).
Since the outbreak of the corona virus, with the implementation of the “quarantine rules,” we students (especially those under 20 years old) needed to adapt to a “new normal,” which meant staying indoors, thus preventing us to do the things we deemed as “normal,” which included going to school and learning inside a four-walled classroom together with 30–40 people. This pandemic has affected education way more than we believe; for it deprives us of the quality education that we are ought to be given.
We are forced to be in front of our gadgets for 7–8 hours a day to listen to our teachers while they virtually teach the class. That mainly is not the problem—the problem is the lack of preparedness for this new leap on education. Not every student can afford gadgets or the materials necessary for education to take place in their home. Some students may not even find this teaching approach appropriate for them because their way of learning may not be within the scope of online classes. However, despite all the inconveniences, the school year 2020–2021 is still being pushed through.
As students, this pandemic should not hinder us from fulfilling our duties and responsibilities as children of God. It may also serve us as our opportunity to strengthen our faith and tighten our bonds with the people surrounding us. We could use this time to reflect on personal matters and decisions that would lead us to understand ourselves better to serve as our aid in personal and spiritual growth. By attending daily masses or daily prayer meetings, we will be able to reconnect with God, and learn new things about Him every day.
Our role, however, does not stop there. Aside from our duties and responsibilities, being a student means that we should be able to help other people in our own little ways, especially now that we are under this pandemic. By doing simple things such as staying at home, posting positive messages on social media, signing petitions, and spreading accurate and helpful news, we can be of great help to those around us.
That is why, if you can be a positive light in this darkened society, then be just that. Being a catholic student means redefining our generation through the influence of good morals and proper knowledge. So, let us all stand as one, and do our absolute best, so that the light of hope and peace may come.
John Christopher Padua
Louise Gabriel Cardenas