August 27, 2012

Kids and parents cope with School Day One

Students put on new uniforms, boarded school buses and greeted friends and teachers Monday as they joined thousands of North Texas classmates for the first day of school.

Rants, raves, reviews and resources for Dallas-Fort Worth parents

Students put on new uniforms, boarded school buses and greeted friends and teachers Monday as they joined thousands of North Texas classmates for the first day of school.

Some families started the day before dawn -- either to get their kids up and out the door in time to catch the bus or to drop them off at school for an extracurricular activity like track practice. At a few campuses, students arrived at new or significantly renovated schools.

It is safe to say that the first day of school was sometimes as tough on parents as on their children.

This is how the day went as the first bells rang, according to tweets submitted by reporters and readers.

" Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Walter Dansby was at the new Young Men's Leadership Academy for media interviews at 5:30 am." @ jessamybrown.

Students at the academy in Fort Worth will have mandatory Latin classes, required community service and daily assemblies.

Located in the former Dunbar 6th Grade Center, it joins a handful of all-boy public schools in Texas. Admission to the school, which enrolls 150 sixth- and seventh-graders, was open to students from across the district and was not limited to top-performing students.

"North Crowley students start first day of school with a minor school bus accident but no students were hurt." @fwhanna, Bill Hanna.

"How exciting to see my baby girl set out on her new adventure. Kinder here she comes." @M_Brigman.

"Went over first day list 10 times last night only for them to have forgotten everything ..." @Tyra_Jordan.

"First bell went really good till she asked me if I wanted to leave." @marielsancen.

"Some parents reported bus delays this morning. Keller ISD official says traffic congestion was the only problem."@SandraEngelland.

"Ivan Wubs, 4, had a tummy ache before class at Luella Merrett Elem in FW. Therapy dog Herbie offers comfort." @jessamybrown.

The therapy dogs help kids deal with the anxiety of their first day at school. It is part of the Pet Partners Program. They'll show up throughout the year, and kids will practice reading aloud to them.

Cannon Elementary School in the Grapevine-Colleyville school district is one of three schools that start kindergarten students in a dual-language immersion class. Students who begin there will stick together through the sixth grade in the dual-language program.

"First day ever at Mansfield Lake Ridge High, near Joe Pool Lake. Principal Sean Scott welcomed about 1,740 students." @ patrickwalker1.

Lake Ridge students come from Arlington, Grand Prairie and even the Burleson area, in addition to Mansfield, Scott said. An exception was made for the school's first year to allow any student in the district to attend who wanted to.

Members of the student council, spirit groups, the marching band and, of course, the football team worked this summer to establish the new school's culture.

"The kids who are here want to be here," Scott said. "It's a vibrant environment."

At lunchtime, Jabari Ford, a freshman football player from Grand Prairie, was all smiles at what he had seen.

"It's been really fun so far," he said, adding a comment on the 422,000-square-foot building: "It's really big."

Among the new campuses that opened Monday are:

Castleberry schools: A.V. Cato Elementary School, Fort Worth. 2012 enrollment: 750 in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. This is a replacement building for a school.

Eagle Mountain-Saginaw schools: Chisholm Trail High School, Fort Worth. Enrollment: 938 freshmen and sophomores.

Everman schools: Everman Academy High School. Enrollment: 39. This school in the renovated Shelby Learning Center is for students who have fallen behind on credits.

Mansfield schools: Mansfield Lake Ridge High School, Mansfield. Enrollment: 1,650.

Northwest schools: Truett Wilson Middle School, Haslet. Enrollment: 615.

In a few school districts, including Northwest and Burleson, the fall semester begins today.

"Arlington trustee Tony Pompa's day; visits to Sam Houston, Arlington High, and 'embarrassing my daughter' at Young Junior High." @shirljinkins.

"First day of school haiku: Belly growls in class; Finally, the lunch bell rings; Yuck! Mystery meat." @gdickson.

"Obviously, this is a huge transformation for this school." _ Superintendent Marcelo Cavazos, feasting at new AHS cafeteria.@ shirljinkins.

It was the first time the students used the new cafeteria and 13 new classrooms at Arlington High.

Administrators said the increased space and serving capacity will ease the need for a lunch break pattern that disrupted class scheduling and the flow of the school day.

The upgrades were paid for with a combination of 2009 bond funds, surplus 1999 bond funds and local construction funds.

A new electronic marquee has been placed in front of the new cafeteria, and throughout September crews will be finishing a $380,000 landscaping, drainage and front facade upgrade.

"Ridglea Hills Elem was packed this AM and PM, but we had a great first day of kindergarten!"@TeamWharton

"This morning he would not let me kiss him goodbye But after school, he ran up to me with open arms." @DAGCAT1234.

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