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Highline High School
615 S 200th St Des Moines, WA 98198

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Monday-Friday: 7:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Highline High School
615 S 200th St Des Moines, WA 98198

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I am an essential worker and a student 

A Highline High School student wrote the following article. The views expressed here do not reflect the views of Highline Public Schools or Highline High School. 

I am an essential worker and a student 
Andrea Talamantes

Being a student during this time is hard enough when everything has been moved to online classes, but when you add on the pressure of being an essential worker things start to get stressful. 

I started my job at the beginning of this global pandemic, which in itself is a blessing because I knew that I was going to be able to help my family financially. 

As things started to get progressively worse with the spread of COVID19, I quickly realized that I wasn’t being protected by my employer as I should be. All throughout March we were not being provided masks or gloves, we had to bring our own if we wanted to be protected. Mid-April is around the time when the corporation I work for finally decided to provide us with masks and gloves. Within that same week in which we were finally obligated to wear protective gear at work we also got the news that there was a COVID19 case in our store but that we would continue to stay open as we have been. As a full time highschool student this is stressful because I not only have to think about finishing all my assignments before going to work in the afternoons and weekends but I also have to think about keeping myself and my family safe especially now that I am considered an essential worker. 

The majority of us have seen all the appreciation posts about essential workers in the last two months but that appreciation isn’t being reflected when customers actually go to the store. The majority of the customers who shop at the store come in without facemasks or any sort of protective gear whatsoever thus making it harder for employees such as myself to remain protected while on the job.  

This pandemic has pushed me as a student to levels I’ve never been to before because now I have to take responsibility for my own learning since there isn’t anyone telling me what to do anymore. Being an essential worker and a full time student has pushed me to learn good time management since there isn’t a strict schedule I have to follow anymore. 

There is still so much left to learn in the coming months as this pandemic continues but as time passes by make sure to stay safe and healthy, Pirates!