08/26/08 — Officials: First day of school went well

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Officials: First day of school went well

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on August 26, 2008 1:42 PM

School officials reported a "smooth transition" for the first day of school Monday, with only a few delays reported by the transportation department. Student numbers are also up 169 from the previous year.

The first-day headcount for the 33 county schools was 18,267, compared to 18,098 for opening day in 2007.

For years, the district has averaged 19,000 students, which is expected to be attained by the 10th day of classes. The 10th day is used as the state's measure for determining student funding.

Likewise, changes to bus routes will not be addressed until after day 10. Unless it is a safety issue, it is transportation policy to wait until then to make any changes, said Raymond Smith, transportation director.

Smith, who late last week announced changes to the number of stops that would be made in 154 subdivisions around the county, requested patience during the transition.

"We just want to remind drivers to keep an eye out for children at bus stops, as well as for those walking to or from school in the morning and afternoon," he said. "Drivers should also slow down for crosswalks."

Comparing enrollment numbers, the schools showing the greatest increases included Charles B. Aycock High School, 1,203 from 1,164, Carver Elementary, 682 from 635, and Dillard Middle, 211 from 182.

Eastern Wayne Elementary dropped slightly, 695 from 724 last year, as did Eastern Wayne High, 1,093 from 1,195.

Schools Superintendent Dr. Steven Taylor maintained that the start of a new school year is an exciting time for the district.

"We look forward to a great school year and our staff will use the next 10 months to
continue preparing students for higher learning and the global challenges of the 21st century," he said.