New Kids On The Block

Freshmen Return to Campus on Thursday

Na Hoku Staff

It will be deja vu all over again for the Class of 2024 this week. The freshmen will begin returning to campus for in-person instruction starting this Thursday, one day after New Student Orientation. Their first time on campus had them relegated to the cafeteria only for ID picture taking. 

About 130 students in Group A (last names A-Fo) will begin meeting their classmates and teachers face to face for the first time this school year.  Group B will start next week.

While the upperclassmen take comfort that when they return to campus, it will be a familiar–albeit slightly rearranged–environment, for the freshmen, the 33 acres of the school will be a new experience.

“What I am looking forward to when coming to campus is running around, finding which class is mine because I want to walk more and explore,” Vienne Tworek said.

Ashlee Sakamoto said Moanalua’s campus “is much bigger than the school I previously went to,” so adjusting will be a challenge at first.

The format of distance learning has meant that people are not able to connect in person, but for some students, they do not even know what each other looks like.

“Since some of my teachers do not do synchronous classes, I’m excited to see their faces and other classmates to make more friends in school,” Sophia Ysabelle Arines said. 

According to the administration’s return-to-campus plan, the freshmen will be the only group allowed to attend in-person classes between October 29 and November 10. This will allow each of the four alpha groups to come to campus without the fear of interacting with too many other students.  

Given the number of weeks left in the second quarter, the freshmen will have had three opportunities to come to campus. The upperclassmen will join the rotation, with Group A in grades 10-12 starting November 12.  They will have two opportunities to come to campus this quarter. The addition of the upperclassmen will mean about 500 students at any given time will  be on campus after the 12th.  A small number of students have opted to remain all-virtual for the rest of the term.

Moanalua High School Principal Robin Martin said the administration will monitor the school’s safety protocols during the two-week freshman-only period and make necessary adjustments before the rest of the student population returns.