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The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

NOLA to NYC: 10th Grade Trip Revised for the Class of 2024

Class+of+2021+WIS+students+working+at+Habitat+for+Humanity+during+their+trip+to+NOLA+in+spring+2019.+Due+to+the+pandemic%2C+there+havent+been+any+other+10th+grade+trips+since+then.+%28Courtesy+of+Sophia+Nehme%29
Class of 2021 WIS students working at Habitat for Humanity during their trip to NOLA in spring 2019. Due to the pandemic, there haven’t been any other 10th grade trips since then. (Courtesy of Sophia Nehme)

The Upper School administration announced that the 10th grade trip is being brought back, but will be relocated to New York City (NYC) for the 2022 trip. Due to COVID-19, the 10th grade New Orleans (NOLA) trip has been canceled for the past two years. 

The logistics of the New York trip first came out towards the end of February. During a parent meeting, the 10th grade parents discovered that instead of visiting NOLA, the trip would move to NYC. This decision was made due to the higher risk of infection of COVID-19 by getting on a plane, rather than taking a bus to NYC, according to Grades 9/10 Assistant Principal Allison Ewing.

During the NYC trip, the same COVID precautions in place at school will apply. This includes keeping a safe distance when going to public locations, bringing masks and wearing them if required by shops and making sure to bring vaccination cards.

At the start of the school year, Ewing was unsure of  whether this trip would happen. Upon seeing the COVID-19 cases dying down, this 10th grade trip started becoming a possibility. 

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However, a number of parents expressed concern over the virus, so a survey was sent out to see what families were comfortable with and if they wanted to participate. 

“With a lot of students coming with us, we must be mindful with COVID and the Omicron strand going around,” Ewing said, “We were worried about the flights and the possibility of getting stuck in [NOLA] if a flight were to get canceled, so we’ve settled on a day’s driving distance by bus.”

Both the Class of 2022 and 2023 have missed their 10th grade trips due to the rise of the COVID-19 virus. 

“As a senior, not getting to go to NOLA was not as big of a deal as it felt originally in 10th grade,” senior Zach Roberts said. “But I think we did miss out on the culture of [NOLA] and experiencing Louisiana.” 

Similarly, the Class of 2024, now 10th-graders, missed their eighth grade language trips to Paris and Lima due to the pandemic in March 2020. 

The eighth grade language trips consisted of a student exchange program led by WIS and the partnered schools in Paris, France; Lima, Peru; and Madrid, Spain. The students each had a correspondent, who would live with them for 10 days in the fall. During the spring, WIS students would travel to their designated country to visit their correspondent. 

Although the current seniors and juniors did not get to go on their 10th grade trip, they did get to go on their eighth grade language trips and many felt it was a great bonding experience for their grade.

“I’m definitely grateful that in the fall [of 2019] we did get a chance to have correspondents, but I think not being able to go was heartbreaking, because I wanted to experience a new city with my friends,” sophomore Klara Young said. “I’m very excited  to go to [NYC] because I think it will open up a lot of opportunities to learn and appreciate the city, while still having fun with friends.” 

Many sophomores share Young’s opinion on the trip, as they want to experience a trip outside of the DMV and be immersed in a new environment. 

The 10th grade trip to NYC consists of visiting the Tenement Museum, watching a Broadway show, walking the Brooklyn Bridge, visiting the Empire State Building Observatory and a number of other group activities. Students will be staying at the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel in Midtown. 

“A goal of mine throughout this trip is to learn more about New York and see places I haven’t before, while also experiencing a new culture and a good New York pizza,” Young said. 

In the future, the WIS administration hopes to have more trips for the younger grades so everyone can experience such an opportunity as a grade. 

“I really do hope that the current 10th-graders can enjoy this trip,” Ewing said. “I hope they create a sense of community, bond and make good memories, while learning new things and aspects about this great city.”

By Sofia Braccialarghe

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