Two rising seniors reflect on a strange year

Last March, we needed a break. Between completing school assignments, studying for the SAT, trying to decide on what colleges to add to our college lists, and interning after school, we had not had a lot of time to ourselves. 

But the SAT was coming up in a few weeks, and we were determined to do well. As our math teacher at school would say, the SATs were our chance to earn “free money.” And as twins whose parents would be paying two college tuitions at the same time, we so desperately wanted that free scholarship money. 

However, we were exhausted and yearned for a few days of pure relaxation. Little did we know we would be getting way more than a few days. 

On March 13, 2020, DPS announced that all its district schools would be going on spring break a week early, leaving us with three weeks to ourselves. We saw it as a blessing in disguise. Without school assignments coming in, we could focus solely on the SAT which was taking place on April 7th.

We spent an hour every day of spring break completing exercises on Khan Academy or solving problems in our textbook. And each day, we would get fewer questions wrong and more questions right. We were confident that our scores on the SAT would be hundreds of points ahead of the scores we got on the PSAT that January. 

April arrived, and we found out that we would not be returning to school in person. Instead, we would pick up where we left off in March, but through a computer, in the comfort of our bedrooms. Would we be taking the SAT in our bedrooms too? Our teachers didn’t know.

But when the College Board announced its decision to postpone the test until further notice, and as colleges began to announce that they would be going test-optional for the class of 2021, it became obvious that the extra hours we spent staying after school had gone to waste.

We would not be taking the SAT junior year, and possibly not as seniors either. Was it a relief that we would not have to sit in a room for four hours to take a hard test? To some extent, yes. But we would actually have preferred to be at school for eight hours everyday, do two hours worth of homework when we get home, and be able to take the SAT, to spending almost every day of the week staring at a screen. 

We miss being at school, and it sucks not being able to see our friends or spend our senior year with the people we’d gotten used to seeing every day since freshman year. But at the end of the day, we know that we need to stay home for our own good. 

Right now, all we can do is pray that the coronavirus goes away, and sometime soon. We’ve gone through four years of high school. We deserve to be able to go to prom. And we deserve to walk across that stage at the end of senior year to collect our diploma. 

So please, please, please, wear a mask. 

Jennifer and Jessica Aggrey
Jennifer and Jessica Aggrey are 17-year-old twin sisters who are seniors at DSST Green Valley Ranch. They have been active members of Young Aspiring Americans for Social and Political Activism (YAASPA) since 2016.