MISSOULA — Missoula County Public Schools (MCPS) welcomed students to their first day of the school year with open arms on Tuesday morning.
We all can remember the time where we walked into the classroom on the first day of school, where the emotions of anticipation, fear and excitement all meshed together
Russell Elementary School students headed back into the classroom and the teachers, parents, and principal, could not be happier to have them back.
“I mean you get the same jitters your kids have of wanting to know how they adapt and wanting them to feel comfortable and welcomed and so it's great to have a school that goes over and above, to try and ease your mind as a parent, as you see your kids walk away." - parent Tyler Velin
“So I sent out an email to staff this morning with the subject line, married, Happy Christmas morning," said Principal Peter Halloran. "And that's not an exaggeration for me when I think about my favorite days of the year, this is like the top two or three.”
An agreed-upon excitement for the school year is a type of learning we have taken for granted over the last year of COVID-19 -- and that is socializing.
“I think more the social aspect of it is what's exciting for our family,” said Claire Matten, parent of first grade student at Russell Elementary School.
“The socializing of meeting new friends every year is always great for the kids,” added Jeff Grant a parent of a first grade and third grade student.
The school is seeing similar enrollment numbers to the academic year before COVID-19. Some students opted for remote online learning only and some chose to homeschool last year.
Halloran says while some families have stayed with those learning methods, most came back this fall for in-person learning.
The 2021/22 academic school year is in full swing, and one thing is for certain, students will be reaching new heights.