Boston College has dragged its feet making decisions and responding to feedback regarding its response to COVID-19. At the beginning of the school year, BC was not testing students frequently enough, much to the frustration of students and the local community. This past week, the University tested every undergraduate for the first time, after students and community members have been calling for increased testing all semester. The school announced last week that it will make a decision about whether students will be allowed back to campus after Thanksgiving Break by Monday, just over a month before the holiday.
If BC’s Thanksgiving plan involves sending students home, students will have roughly five weeks to buy plane tickets. For some students who are still slated to go abroad in the spring (which the University also has yet to make an announcement about), they will only have that much time to move out completely. It’s understandable why some students are frustrated with BC’s too-little-too-late approach.
To avoid another late decision, the University should decide now about what it plans to do about Spring Break.
Currently, BC’s Spring Break is scheduled for March 1 through 6. According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, normal life in the US is not slated to return completely until the end of 2021. Mass student travel to and from campus is dangerous while the pandemic continues. Spring Break cannot be the same as it has been in past years.
The University has a few options. It could follow Boston University, which canceled Spring Break altogether and pushed back the beginning of spring semester by a week. It could also follow the University of Pennsylvania, which shortened the break in order to discourage students from traveling.
To give students the break they need, Boston College would ideally split the break up into two different, shorter breaks. This would ensure that students (and professors) still have a moment to breathe during the semester while discouraging students from traveling outside of Massachusetts. Whatever its decision may be, BC must decide soon, or it could find itself making a similar, last-minute decision as it is for Thanksgiving Break.
A group of Heights editors who are committed to participating in the consistent writing of editorials comprise the editorial board. Editors who report on topics discussed in editorials are not permitted to participate in the discussion or writing of the editorial.
Members: Colleen Martin, Abby Hunt, Maddie Haddix, Brooke Kaiserman, Meegan Minahan, Jillian Ran, Danny Flynn, and Rachel Phelan.