Families have begun to prepare for another year of school as they make stops to stores, purchasing notebooks, pencils, lunch boxes and new shoes for their children.
Stacey Miccicat, who has three kids heading to Fletcher Elementary School for another year, has completed school shopping. Her children, who are boys entering first, third and fourth grade, are excited to head back to see friends and have fun. Micciat jokingly said that she's ready for them to head back.
"My hope going into the school year for my kids is that they do well and make lifelong friends," she said.
With the school year approaching, she mentioned her hope that parents continue to take an active role with their kids' learning, whether it be kindergarteners, middle or high schoolers.
"Parents are the first teachers for the kid," she said, adding that she understands some parents have work schedules that make it hard. Miccicat has a set schedule with her children. When they come home, she always talks to them about their day and what they learned.
Miccicat commended school teachers at Fletcher Middle School for their open communication with parents. From the time that Rogers Elementary School closed, class sizes doubled at Fletcher. It became hard for many kids as Miccicat said, but with the help by teachers, the transition went well.
"They are great answering questions and they are very friendly," Miccicat said. "Teachers want to see all students in their class succeed."
Erika Zielinski has two kids entering sixth and eight grade who are very much looking forward to the school year. Zielinski, region director of the Parent Teachers Association, is looking forward to the implementation of Common Core. She also mentioned the key role parents play after school.
"I'm looking to see how far they've come from Common Core," Zielinski said. "Last year was a learning year and I'm looking to see the kind of progressions made. As for the parents role in learning, I don't think education goes from 8 to 3. Parents need to help their kids understand what they're learning."
Zielinski could not say enough about the teachers and staff, all the way down to maintenance, at Jefferson Middle School. Her kids, too, are gearing up for another successful year.
"Everybody at Jefferson wants to be involved in the students' lives," Zielinski said.