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Coronavirus' reach extends to Central


Last updated 3/11/2020 at 4:12pm | View PDF

It has become the biggest news story for the last month. Every social media platform and news outlet has had its eyes trained on the latest information, constantly updating their systems, as it seems that more and more dire news has surfaced about the viral coronavirus.

What started out as a normal strain of the flu has reached a global pandemic of more than 100,000 confirmed cases worldwide. Schools have been shut down in places like China, Japan and Italy. Travel plans have been postponed, abroad studies have been canceled and universities have pulled their students home and canceled classes. It seems like the whole world has been placed on halt as scientists and researchers work to develop a vaccine or cure for this contagious virus.

Personally, my family had been planning an exciting trip to Europe for spring break that we all had been looking forward to. We were planning on touring London and Paris, but just last week Paris officials warned against travelers coming into the country. Famous tourist sites like the Louvre have been momentarily shut down amidst fear of tourists contracting the virus through the air. Therefore, due to the coronavirus and the fear that foreign countries might quarantine Americans, my family has decided to cancel this trip with less than a month to go.

Many of my friends at school are in a similar situation. More and more families have chosen to reevaluate their travel plans in a conscientious effort to maintain their health. Whether that be through staying home or stocking up on hand sanitizer and soap, these next few months of the school year have seen major changes to keep everyone healthy and safe.

As a high school junior, my priorities have been set on school work and college planning. But as of late, it's also been a focus of mine to stay healthy. I've been washing my hands more, paying attention to the things I touch, and making my health more of a priority.

So though we may fault this virus for ruining travel plans, perhaps we can thank it for reminding us of what is important in life - staying healthy. The opportunity to travel is a privilege in it of itself, but the things that matter in life are our health and wellbeing.

My peers, teachers and I have discussed worst case scenarios in which the school gets shut down and students are forced to continue work online. Had someone told me that a week ago, I would have called it ludicrous, but the reality is the pandemic needs to be slowed somehow. Nonetheless, this disease frenzy has reminded me to keep things in perspective and not take the little things for granted.

- Cedra Jazayerli, a junior at Hinsdale Central, is a

contributing columnist. Readers can email her at

[email protected]


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