Principaling During a Pandemic

Randi Reichert, Staff Writer

The global pandemic has been a huge change in the world. It has impacted many things and has created a different lifestyle for many. It has affected many people’s jobs, home life, and even everyday things like grocery shopping. It has left many afraid of leaving their own home, or even visiting a family member. One person who has been greatly affected by the global pandemic is Dover Area High School principal Jennifer Fasick. Her job as a principal has changed in numerous ways. Being a principal in a school full of teenagers is not easy, let alone during a pandemic. The pandemic affects many things in the school that Fasick has to deal with. Fasick first became a principal when she came to Dover Area School District in June of 2020. Before, she was an assistant principal for seven years.

Fasick chose to be a principal because she wanted to challenge herself as a leader and an educator. She wanted to be able to be in a building where she can lead discussions and bring positive change rather than following someone else’s vision. Fasick has dealt with the pandemic in a heavy fashion; it has taken over her job. The duties she has in a day often surround the pandemic. These duties range from contract tracing, to dealing with effects Covid has on students and teachers in the building. The biggest difference Fasick deals with is not being as involved in daily instruction within the classrooms as she normally would have been before. Fasick has dealt with many challenges brought upon her due to the pandemic. Social distancing to ensure everyone’s safety and health has been difficult. A big challenge Fasick deals with is making decisions and not being able to base them on past experiences. Many challenges include instruction, feeding students, setting up the cafeteria, and hallway travel.

Along with many other challenges, enforcing the rules of the new building as well as Covid restrictions is not easy for Fasick. It is very difficult to have students follow all rules which has made mask wearing and one-way hallways very tiresome. Fasick’s least favorite thing about working in the pandemic is having to quarantine students. There is nothing tougher for Fasick than telling a student, who has done nothing wrong, that they cannot return for 10-14 days. Seeing teachers and students enjoying school and participating in events outside of school is something Fasick misses most about her job before the pandemic.