The BFA Beat

The BFA Beat

Bella Bonasera, Writer

In the summer of 2020, BFA’s principal, Brett Blanchard, invited each class’s President and Vice President (and some members of the Athletic Council) to give input at a meeting concerning issues that would affect them and their classmates the following school year.  Since then, the committee has met (and continues to meet) every two weeks to discuss the future, and well-being, of the BFA student body.

On March 17, The Mercury attended their meeting. The topic of opening full-time was the first to be discussed, but if the BFA population of around a thousand students was to come back full time, the ability of contact tracing and staying true to state guidelines would be difficult. BFA’s administrators are also cautious about bringing students back with the end of the school year rapidly approaching. 

“There was no plan sent out that the schools can operate under,” said Blanchard. Blanchard has also been in contact with other schools around the state, the majority of which have said they have given up hope of reopening fully this year. 

A student on the committee suggested that the school should focus on getting those that are struggling back to four days a week, instead of opting for everyone to return to school at once. 

BFA math teacher Karla Kane, who was also in attendance, suggested that they send out a survey to the student body to figure out who would be willing to come back if four days was an option. The majority of the students on the committee agreed that the integration of more students should be a phased approach rather than all at once. 

The next topic discussed was graduation. One problem is that the senior class has 150 students, which sparked a conversation of a split graduation. Blanchard asked the seniors on the committee whether they would prefer a split graduation, so more family members could attend, or a full class graduation with less family. The seniors agreed that they wanted a whole class graduation as they have been split for so long. The debate around how many family members will be able to attend is still up in the air. 

Another problem is the weather. Because of COVID, the graduation would most likely be outside, but Vermont weather is unpredictable, and it would take a lot longer than a week to plan a graduation ceremony, especially this year with social distancing. Thus, the meeting ended with much for the administration to think about. 

The Mercury will continue to report out on these meetings every two weeks, keeping you up-to-date on the discussions that occur between Blanchard and members of BFA’s student body.