Lightridge Sports Scores
  • Apr 9 / Varsity Girls LacrosseLightridge - 17, Broad Run - 1
  • Apr 9 / JV Girls LacrosseLightridge - 12, Broad Run - 2
  • Apr 8 / Varsity Girls TennisLightridge - 2, Riverside - 7
  • Apr 8 / Varsity Boys TennisLightridge - 1, Riverside - 8
  • Apr 8 / JV Boys SoccerLightridge - 3, Stone Bridge - 0
  • Apr 8 / Varsity Boys SoccerLightridge - 3, Stone Bridge - 0
  • Apr 8 / Varsity BaseballLightridge - 5, Stone Bridge - 6
  • Apr 8 / Varsity SoftballLightridge - 3, Stone Bridge - 0
  • Apr 8 / JV BaseballLightridge - 1, Stone Bridge - 7
  • Apr 8 / JV SoftballLightridge - 1, Stone Bridge - 6
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Lightridge News

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Lightridge News

Lightridge News

Vacancies in teaching positions have jumped 25% in recent years as more teachers leave the profession and less recent college graduates decide to pursue careers in education.
Teacher shortage hits Loudoun and Lightridge
Lalitha Aravind, Associate Story Editor • April 11, 2024
Junior Lexi Musick gets down behind home plate in the varsity softball game against Millbrook on March 11.
Spring Sports Photo Roundup
Amber Baptista and Kendall MatthewsApril 4, 2024
This coveted music award isnt always without  controversy. 
Graphic courtesy of The Recording Academy.
Lightridge corrects the Grammy record
Aanya Dhannapuneni, Staff Writer • April 1, 2024

Op-Ed: Social media isn’t social

More+and+more+students+are+cutting+themselves+off+from+real+world+interactions+in+favor+of+a+life+online.
Tre Holley
More and more students are cutting themselves off from real world interactions in favor of a life online.

When was the last time you checked your screen time? What apps are you using the most daily? Social media has become a normal part of being a teenager. It is easy to get sucked into the drama that happens on screen, but it’s just as easy to forget how to disconnect from it. Rather than disconnecting from social media, we resort to disconnecting from reality.

Students are becoming more isolated and awkward. I’ve noticed that many cannot hold eye contact during conversations, or are too scared to speak out in front of peers. However, it’s easy to notice that these same people appear outgoing on social media. Are we normalizing limited human interaction and accepting interaction that is solely online?

I have had my fair share of time spent on social media. However, I have had most social media apps deleted for over a year now. I have cut out Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok. My accounts can still be found if searched but are and have been inactive. I chose to remove myself from these platforms for reasons involving my self image and how I was portraying myself to others. In my experience, deleting these problematic apps have made me more social and led me to have stronger relationships with the people around me.

Even with this experience, I can easily understand why teens have such a hard time distancing themselves from social media. When I first deleted the apps, my days felt very empty and I felt like I had lost contact with the outside world. Being alone in public still made me anxious, something I’ve struggled with for most of my life, but now I had nothing to do to look busy. I had been using my phone and the apps on it as a shield. It was something to hide behind when I was out in public by myself. However, one day I was shocked to realize I had started to enjoy my time alone. I didn’t need to hide anymore.

I surveyed twelve teenagers at Lightridge and found that the overall average amount of daily screen time is 5 hours and 54 minutes. The most common top apps were Instagram and TikTok. Most screen time statistics pages showed over 20 hours of social media usage per week, even an alarming 30 hours from one student. These students do not report doing much else with free time. If they’re not doing homework then they are doom scrolling on TikTok. These apps drain so much time out of students’ days that it leaves students feeling like there is no time left in the day to get anything else done. They end up more stressed due to time loss, which causes more anxiety, which then causes them to retreat to the safety of their phones, and the whole cycle continues.

Students turn to social media for a break from their strenuous schedules and help them relax. However, according to the American Psychological Association, the rise of social media usage is resulting in increased anxiety, depression, and losing focus. Students should try to find other ways to relax that are more productive, hobbies such as drawing, gaming, and baking. Despite the difficulty with disconnecting from social media apps, it is an effort that will lead to healthier and possibly lifelong habits. This is a hard lesson, but worth it.

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About the Contributors
Jenna Hong, Reporter
Jenna is a Junior at Lightridge. This is her first year as a member of the Lightridge News staff.
Tre Holley, Photo Editor
Tre is a senior and a first year member of the Lightridge News staff. He is primarily interested in photojournalism.

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    Cherie DominguezJan 26, 2024 at 5:28 pm

    Very wonderful said young author. I hope all the students who read your article will check their scree times and if necessary get rid of all the sod robbing them of real life fun, and relationships.

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