Eager children clung to their parents, but let go to rush to old teachers for hugs. Parents scrambled to pick up paperwork as well as keeping tabs on their little ones and teachers were already calming first-day nerves with encouraging smiles.
With 20 Floyd County Schools and St. Mary’s Catholic School being thrust into the new academic year on Wednesday, Tim Hensley, assistant to the superintendent for the county system, said there are a few things to bear in mind.
“Traffic is always a little more congested on the first day of school,” he said, adding that parents tend to take their children to school on the first day. “Leave a little earlier than usual, and be patient when finding parking.”
He said while students get reacquainted with their old friends and meet their new teachers, the first day comes with logistical paperwork to take home and get signed.
There have been changes to most all of the bus routes, he said, so if parents are relying on last year’s routes and schedules, they may be thrown for a loop. By visiting http://www.floydboe.net/information/busstopinfo.com, parents can type in their home address to make sure of what time buses will come their ways.
“We expect everything to run smoothly,” Hensley said. “We’re looking forward to a good first day.”
Alto Park fourth grade math teacher Janie Brynteson said she knows students can be a bit nervous on the first day of school, but she has a tactic to turn their jitters into laughter.
“I give them examples of when I was in school,” she said. “I show them a little PowerPoint with my fourth grade picture to kind of give them the idea that I’ve been in their shoes and there’s really nothing to worry about. I try to do a lot of encouraging and just make them feel safe, comfortable and excited.”
Katie Rhinehart, an 8-year-old rising third-grader at Alto Elementary, said she likes everything about the first day of school.
“I get to meet new friends,” she said.
Her mother, Essie Rhinehart said Katie is a “mother hen” in the classroom, as she enjoys helping out her friends.