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Schools

Local elementary schools start year with high hopes

Town Crier Editorial Intern

Blach Intermediate School

Blach is beginning their turn as a temporary camp school and so the weeks leading to the first day of school were spent moving into new classrooms. By Aug. 27, the portables were ready to house the largest enrollment in several years, just shy of 470 students.

"It's quite nice, brand new, clean and air-conditioned. We've had tremendous support from people who've worked on the school. Teachers have put in unbelievable hours of extra time getting their stuff moved into the portables and setting up. I think the kids and parents were amazed on how settled everything was," said Arthur Harris, principal.

Egan Intermediate School

A large seventh-grade class brought Egan's enrollment to 446 students.

"The first day was just terrific. Great kids ... wonderful teaching staff ... very enthusiastic parents. It was great," said Principal Brenda Dyckman.

Almond Elementary School

Eighty new kindergartners weren't the only newcomers to Almond. First-year Principal Jeff Baier was there to watch 550 students attend their first day back.

"The staff is just outstanding. There are very high expectations for the children, and the students achieve remarkably," said Baier.

Bullis-Purissima Elementary School

Bullis recorded the smallest attendence in the district at 376 students, with very few absences.

"It was fabulous, a very smooth opening. I think everyone was excited and eager to start. We started the morning off with a parent coffee," said Principal Patricia Boettcher. "We're looking foreword to a fabulous year."

Loyola Elementary School

Regardless of having the second largest attendance in the district, Loyola's 565 students had a smooth day back from summer.

"This is probably one of the smoothest openings we've had in a long time. Kids and parents and teachers seem to be very happy. I'm really pleased with the way students have returned to school ready to work and ready to learn," said Principal Linda Eckols.

Oak Elementary School

Oak's attendance is the biggest it has ever been, recording 463 students.

"The first day of school went very, very well. It's a time-honored tradition to do the salute to the flag in front of the flagpole every morning," said Principal Leslie Crane. "On the first day of school, I think the entire community was there. It was something to see,very impressive. I think it really set a positive tone for the beginning of the school year."

Santa Rita Elementary School

Santa Rita underwent some minor remodeling and construction, including moving their entire school library into portables to prepare 503 students for the first day of school.

"It went exceptionally smoothly. We were very excited to see kids and parents again. That's what the school is all about," said Principal Steve Peck.

Springer Elementary School

The days may be warm, but for local intermediate and elementary school students, summer has officially come to an end. Aug. 27 marked the first day of school for the Los Altos Elementary School District and its eight schools, many of which boasted the largest enrollment in years.

Springer Principal Bob Celeste said, "The first week has been going great. We have the most students ever with 618. The kids are enthusiastic and we have new students from around the world - Pakistan, Mexico, Russia and Afghanistan. It's a nice mixture. It enhances the diversity of the school, which is a good thing. Parents are pleased and supportive. I am thrilled."

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