Students bear brunt of closed library during distance learning


Angelina Ruckman

This photo was taken before distance learning began. Since March 13, the Bonita Vista High (BVH) library has been closed except for essential purposes, including technology assistance and textbook recollection. BVH students are currently not allowed to study or participate in any other activity in the library.

Going to the library to check out textbooks and computers was a routine students at Bonita Vista High (BVH) often followed at the beginning of every school year. This year, however, the COVID-19 pandemic has not only closed the BVH campus but also its library. This prevented students and staff from entering the library for the first few months of the 2020-2021 school year.

Former BVH T.E.A.M. tutor and senior Jenna Correa explains that the closure of BVH’s school library negatively affects her as a tutor. T.E.A.M. Tutoring is an after-school service where student volunteers can offer help to any student that may need it. Correa has volunteered as a BVH T.E.A.M. tutor since her junior year.

“[It was] just my junior year until COVID-19 hit and I wasn’t able to be a peer tutor anymore. I would have chosen to [volunteer this year too, if possible],” Correa said.

Senior Jenna Correa has been unable to participate in T.E.A.M. Tutoring in the library since the closure of BVH. (Itzel Leon)

Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, senior Riley Jones often went to the school library to check out books or print out papers for classes. Jones describes that the closing of BVH’s library denies students an important resource.  

“Everyone will be affected by [the closing of the library] because there are students without any access to technology or provided resources needed [for classes],” Jones said. 

International Baccalaureate English Higher Level 1, Theory of Knowledge and English 10 Accelerated teacher Jason Good believes that BVH students do not realize how much the closing of the library actually affects them negatively.

“I think that when we eventually get back to school, that’s when we are going to feel the real-time of a part-time library. I don’t think we have even begun to realize how difficult it will really be,” Good said.

However, Geography teacher and Librarian Mary Aruil believes that the closing of the library hasn’t left too great of an impact on the BVH community.

“I don’t know that [the library closing] affects people greatly. It’s definitely not as convenient, but with COVID-19, everyone’s trying to limit access anyway,” Aruil said.

If the library was now open for students during school hours, I would use it for________________ .

  • for a study place so I can complete my assignments (29%, 12 Votes)
  • printing out assignments or texts (29%, 12 Votes)
  • nothing; I am fine with the way things are and don't really have a need for the library (21%, 9 Votes)
  • checking out some books for personal reading or research (12%, 5 Votes)
  • better Wi-Fi connectivity than I have at home (10%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 26

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Aruil explains that the library is not completely closed down anymore, however, it is cautious about allowing visitors inside. Aruil describes that there are certain days of the week that students, staff and parents can visit the library.

“On Mondays and Thursdays, students can come on campus and get help with either getting textbooks, materials or if they have a problem with their laptops [they can] get their [them] fixed,” Aruil said.

Ultimately, Jones believes the closing of the library serves an important lesson for some students to realize how vital of a resource it is. She believes that some people within the BVH community did not appreciate the library enough before the pandemic.

“Now with the library closed at our school [for many previous resources], it will give people a new perspective that we should not take things for granted, even things such as libraries,” Jones said.