Back To School

Students Return To Class In Many Area Districts

Students get off the bus at Southwestern Central School. P-J file photo by Jordan W. Patterson

Following the Labor Day weekend, many local students were back in the classroom Tuesday rushing through the doors of their respective school districts kicking off the 2018-19 school year.

Locally, Southwestern, Falconer, Frewsburg, Panama, Randolph and Cassadaga Valley school districts all officially began the school year as students leapt off school busses and entered classrooms.

“This is my favorite time of the year,” said Southwestern Superintendent Maureen Donahue.

At Southwestern, elementary school students hopped off busses after the middle and high school students arrived earlier in the morning. Donahue met the students, many equipped with boxes of tissue paper and backpacks. While the middle and high school participated in a full school day, the elementary held a half day of school. She said the majority of the first week is helping students get acclimated to their new schedules.

Donahue admitted the district experienced some minor transportation issues that were quickly rectified and declared opening day a success.

“I love having the kids back,” she added.

In Panama, the district hosted an open house on Aug. 30 that eased the transition of students coming back to class. At the open house, students were given their schedules ahead of time and connected with their district issued iPads. Panama Superintendent Bert Lictus told The Post-Journal the district experienced a “smooth opening day.”

“It went really well,” Lictus said. “The principals worked hard and the teachers were prepared.”

“We’re in full swing,” he continued.

The Clymer Central School District is beginning its year today, as is Chautauqua Lake and Sherman.

Clymer Superintendent Ed Bailey said students will be excited to meet the many new faculty members and the newly appointed principal Corey Markham. The district will hold its grade seven-12 assembly in the Student Performance Center where Markham will meet the majority of Clymer’s students for the first time.

“We are all very excited about the upcoming school year and we look forward to the great things happening in the class room,” Bailey said.

Jamestown Public Schools will be welcoming students in all of its locations Thursday.

Tuesday, JPS hosted Andra Ackerman, a judge from Cohes, N.Y, who spoke to many of the district’s employees in the Jamestown High School auditorium. Ackerman has been involved with youth programs attempting to intervene with teenagers caught in the justice system.

“Thank you Judge Ackerman for your inspirational message of hope for children in poverty!” JPS Superintendent Bret Apthorpe tweeted. “It definitely moved our teachers and staff this morning. You set a powerful tone for all of us!”