As a mom of two high schoolers, to say that the last few months have been a roller coaster, is an understatement.

As they anxiously awaited the BOE decision about virtual learning, we started getting emails about return to play, the county’s excellent solution for giving athletes and band members a chance to get together with their groups for some practice and much needed socialization.

As singers and actors, my kids were excited at the prospect of getting together with their own groups to practice and socialize. Unfortunately, the actors, singers and dancers of the county were excluded from the final decision on who could gather.

Come spring, the athletes and band will not be the only groups that are hoping to perform. As hard as the kids are working with online classes, it’s hard to master a four-part harmony or a challenging dance sequence while singing or dancing alone in a room with fellow class members watching from a computer screen. My son is a senior and understandably disappointed that he is not able to sing with his whole choir or work on scenes with his theater class.

As happy as my kids were to see that their friends were given the opportunity to meet, all they wish is to have the same opportunity to work on their performances. Hopefully the return-to-play guidelines will be revised before it’s too cold to benefit all students looking to perform.

Thea Rudland


(1) comment


"...a chance to get together with their groups for some practice and much needed socialization." I've often thought during these months that my relative social isolation in high school 50 years ago (braces, glasses, height, um, personality) prepared me well for this sudden hermit life. There was nothing to be done at the time except accept my circumstance, high school standards for acceptance being what they were. Only a few years later, kids who barely said a word to me were claiming to have been my dear friends in some hunky dory alternate reality version of high school where it turns out, I wasn't invisible; I was secretly admired for my resistance to conformity. I always say, "Oh. No. That wasn't me, that was...(insert random name)." Somehow I became a person without "much needed socialization." I felt the lack. I don't recommend it. But I lived to tell the tale. There's a longer view a kid won't see.

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