The 2016-2017 school year got off to a smooth start for Lenoir County Public Schools on Monday as teachers and administrators answered the first bell with optimism and students and parents dove back into the academic routine.
“Thing have run very smoothly,” Lorene Bell, principal at La Grange Elementary School, said Monday morning. “We had changed the breakfast procedures over here and were amazed at how quickly that went.”
In her first year as the school’s principal, Bell has nevertheless seen her share of first days during her 30-plus years in public schools, including the past two years as principal at Northeast Elementary in Kinston. She has something of a checklist for a successful start: “buses getting here on time, parents being pleased and children excited about everything. That’s the way it’s gone so far,” she said.
On opening day, LCPS had 133 buses on the road and moved about 75 percent of the system’s total student population to and from schools without a hitch. “Things went well,” Anthony Mitchell, transportation director said. Minor delays caused by one bus having a flat tire and another having a dead battery were overcome without problems, he said.
Superintendent Brent Williams, Associate Superintendent Frances Herring and Assistant Superintendent Nicholas Harvey II made stops at 13 of the 16 schools operating on the traditional calendar on Monday and were scheduled to complete the cycle Tuesday.
One of the administrators’ first stops Monday was at Moss Hill Elementary School, where history has ordained 2016-2017 a special school year.
The oldest portion of the two-story brick school was constructed in 1917 and Moss Hill staff is putting together plans for a big centennial celebration next spring.
The first day of the centennial school year gave Monday special significance, according to Principal Stacy Cauley.
“Today the legacy of smiling children and committed teachers continued to live on in dedication to the education of our students,” she said. “One hundred years of excellence at Moss Hill continued today.”
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