2021-2022 school year news in review


Ayaana Pradhan

The News team takes time to reflect on some of the biggest moments in school News from the 2021-2022 school year.

News Department

With a memorable year nearing its end, some students are moving toward new adventures and some still have a few years left of high school. Despite where they are going, this year was unforgettable. With the hope that next year might be closer to what is considered normal, this year will remain in school history. From devious licks, the first football win in five years, and the lift of the mask mandate, the 2021-2022 school year will be an unforgettable return. The news team is taking some time to reflect on some of the biggest moments of the year. Scroll down to relive history.

Devious licks:

A trend that blew up on TikTok with videos getting thousands of views cost the school bathrooms hundreds of dollars in damage. A video that started with a student from another school stealing a water fountain turned into a nationwide trend of vandalism. With bathroom stalls being ripped out, sinks being destroyed and soap and towel dispensers being stolen, school administrators cracked down on this by locking up the men’s bathrooms. Men’s bathrooms have remained locked up for short periods of time every so often due to the high amount of vandalism and crowding occurring. Although the trend has died down, men’s bathrooms still remain locked every so often. Issues of overcrowding and vandalism are usually reasons for the administration to lock the restrooms.


With students returning back to school in-person after the pandemic, there were some changes to how things were run. Starting off with lunch, seniors were given the opportunity to go off-campus for lunch which was a change favored by seniors and is a change juniors hope remains in place. With social distancing in place, the goal was to allow students to eat while feeling safe. Tables upstairs, and in the auditorium hallway were set up to accommodate social distancing. Locker banks and the library were also available to eat in, but this came to a close early on because of the mess left behind by students. By the end of first semester students were not allowed to eat upstairs, or in the locker banks. All students were then moved to the commons for lunch after the mask mandate was lifted. During the first semester, parents had to self-certify their students every month. If a student was positive for COVID-19 or has been in contact with someone who tested positive, there was a strict stay at home policy. As cases decreased during the second semester, self certification was no longer required. Spirit assemblies were also split in two, one for underclassmen and another for upperclassmen.


Due to COVID-19, many jobs were affected, impacting the school. Teachers were required to be vaccinated or get tested weekly. Some teachers, however, were not willing to comply with these regulations. During quarantine school buses were not in service, which caused bus drivers to be out of job. This carried on when school opened and worsened the already short number of buses used for student transportation. Due to the social distancing rules and the COVID-19 restrictions, students were either forced to use the buses or find different accommodations for travel. As the year commenced, there have been actions to remedy the situation. The school administrators are attempting to hire more teachers, subs, and bus drivers to create a more balanced environment for next year.

Snow Days:

Even during severe weather and a snowstorm, the school was required to be open on Feb 2. 2022. Around 914 students and 20 staff members were absent due to the harsh weather conditions. Based on the decision by District 204 Superintendent Adrian Talley, students and staff were forced to come to school in dangerous conditions. The district administrators later released statements about why this decision was taken due to the positive assessment of the travel conditions.


At the return of in-person school, administration saw an increase in physical and verbal altercations. 28 fights happened within the first two months of the school year. This increase in fights was something not normal in past school years. Fights tended to happen during lunch periods, passing periods, and at the end of the day which is why administrators encouraged students to leave right after the last bell to avoid any altercations. The amount of fights has slowed down as the school year has come to an end. The decreasing number of fights was a result of more supervision being placed around the school and more rules about where students could go came into place. 


During the 2020-2021 school year and the beginning of this year, students were required to wear face masks. This raised varying opinions, some of which were voiced online. Members of the community expressed their opinions on masks, some in favor of masks while others opposed to the mandate. During a school board meeting on Feb. 2, parents did not wear masks, which caused multiple short recesses, and a shortened meeting. On Feb. 22, the mask mandate was lifted and masks became optional for staff and students.

Boundary Changes: 

Due to overpopulation at Metea and underpopulation at Neuqua Valley and Waubonsie Valley, next year students who live in the Still Middle School boundaries will be attending Waubonsie instead. These changes will not be affecting current fifth grade and eighth grade students. Students who currently attend Metea can stay but are not guaranteed transportation so those students will have to provide their own transportation to and from school.