COVID-19 forces administration to postpone Prom


Former juniors pose at last years prom (Photo courtesy of Hannah Brockway).

Molly Wilson

COVID-19 has struck the nation in a way many did not anticipate. Teens went from mocking the virus on social media, to fear that the virus will influence their high school and college experiences. This fear became a reality for students on Mar. 30 when Principal Matthew Durst announced, via a video message on Schoology, that Prom this year is postponed until further notice. 

Originally scheduled for April 18, Prom has been forced to be moved back due to new orders from the president and the governor. 

In the days preceding Durst’s announcement, President Trump made numerous statements during his nightly press briefings regarding the lengthening of his social distancing guidelines until April 30. 

Governor Mike Dewine also made the decision to extend his Stay Home Ohio Order until May 1, further limiting the ability of Ohioans to have public gatherings, as well as lengthening online schooling until May 1. 

With the changes in policy from the federal and state governmental levels, the ability for high schools around the nation to hold prom this spring is severely impacted and almost impossible.

According to Prom adviser Janie Waidelich, there has been no future date discussed so far. 

“We are waiting to see when it will be safe to host Prom and not put out a new date only to have to postpone again,” Waidelich said. 

Prom is traditionally held at the Bryn Du Field House; however, the change in date will also likely affect the venue.

The change in venue is “strictly based on the fact that Bryn Du already has many other events planned in the Field House for late spring and summer dates,” according to Waidelich. 

According to Durst, there are two alternative venues that the administration can consider based on the date they chose for the rescheduled dance.

The news regarding Prom leaves many seniors wondering if Prom will be canceled this year.

“Next to graduation, senior Prom is the next most memorable moments of senior year,” said senior Morgan Roof.  “Not being able to go would be devastating as it is something that wraps up our whole high school experience.” 

Senior Mckenna Beitzel agrees with Roof. “Senior Prom serves as a chance for the whole grade to come together and have one final memory,” Beitzel said.

However, if the social distancing guidelines extend further than May 1, the school will have to comply with the orders and, according to Durst, there is a chance that the Prom will be canceled. 

The administration is going to do everything they can in order to host a prom for their students this year, according to Durst. 

“We are taking this bit-by-bit.”