Second Semester Shift


Chris Thomas, Staff Writer

[Disclaimer: Given the ever changing nature of the Covid-19 pandemic, the content of this article is subject to change – last updated Feb. 22]


This past Tuesday, students across Fulton County returned to school from winter break. However, this dreaded first day back had been preceded by about a week’s worth of online schooling. On Jan. 8, the initial return date, Fulton County Schools announced that in-person learning would be pushed back by one week. According to the Eagle  Update, remote learning was extended in light of “recent developments”. One can only assume that this refers to an outbreak of Covid-19 cases. 


Unfortunately, the arrival of multiple vaccines has not yet quelled the pandemic that continues to wreak havoc across the country. Georgia was one of the first states impacted by Covid-19 and since March 2, the peach state has recorded around 820,000 cases and  over 12,000 deaths. Fulton, Georgia’s largest county, has not fared too poorly. It has consistently maintained similar per capita cases to significantly smaller counties such as Cobb and Dekalb. On top of that, Fulton has retained fewer total cases than Gwinnett, the second largest county in Georgia.  Nevertheless, there is a problem when reported cases increase by 200 percent. The jump from 30k reported cases in November to 72k today has been spurred by holiday festivities. 


What does this mean for Milton High School? Well, in terms of safety precautions, there seems to be a lot of carry-over from last semester.  Masks are still required, hallways are split down the middle, seating charts are spread out and virtual learning is still an option to all students.  


From an academic standpoint, there have been some substantial changes. To the dismay of some students and the glee of some teachers, the grading policy has been revamped. Formatives, in addition to summatives, can now count as grades. That being said, recovery only applies to summative assignments and the initial grade must be lower than 79 to attempt recovery. Students can recover up to a 79, ten points less than last semester. On top of that, Student Success Skills/Social Emotional Learning is making a comeback. This 25 minute period will occur every Wednesday after second period and the remaining class periods will be shortened to accommodate this time.


Earlier on in the new year, Mayor Lockwood and the city council of Milton issued a city proclamation to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Milton High School. As of now, graduation is still on for Milton’s 100th class of seniors, but it is not yet clear what the centennial ceremony will look like. However, the ceremony will occur one way or another. The class of 2020, also impacted by Covid-19,  celebrated with a drive-thru graduation. It wasn’t the usual celebration, but teachers and students have spoken highly of it.


Other school events, such as basketball games and club activities, will still be somewhat restricted. Prom somehow has an even more uncertain future, but the Eagle Edition will continue to report on all things second semester as the year unfolds.


*Feb. 7: The Milton High School graduation ceremony for the class of 2021 will be held on May 21 at 7 PM. Milton has secured the Ameris Bank Amphitheater, a venue which has hosted this event before. There are many logistical items in progress, so stay tuned.