Story by Adam Kwoh
Photo by Alicia Alderete
SPHS’ annual end of the year senior class trip to Yosemite National Park has been canceled in response to the coronavirus threat.
The trip’s non-profit, NatureBridge, announced the cancellation of all its programs until June 5, 2020. The organization provides outdoor education programs to students through experiences in six national parks.
“Our programs—the reason we exist—are cancelled for the rest of the school year. That’s 13,000 kids who don’t get to experience their national parks this spring,” NatureBridge said in a statement. “For our nonprofit, it also means $5 million in lost revenue and significant staff reductions. We, like so many others, are in crisis.”
The NatureBridge program’s Yosemite trip allows students to skip a week of school to explore the natural wonders of Yosemite park through group hikes and activities. Last year, a total of 60 seniors and five teachers partook in the experience.
Seniors and faculty have been anticipating the May trip since early this year, participating in group workouts before and after school in preparation for the trip.
“A lot of us seniors are very disappointed, and I think it sucks even more because a lot of our other senior events got canceled,” senior Hanwul Choi said. ” I was most looking forward to just having a final opportunity to get closer and bond with my classmates and enjoy our last moments of high school together.”
NatureBridge and Activities Director Casey Shotwell will be coordinating to issue refunds to seniors who were planning to go on the trip.