WHS, East Ridge principals look ahead to new school yearWoodbury High School Principal Linda Plante and East Ridge High School Principal Aaron Harper said they are excited for the first bell to ring on a new school year.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
The last few minutes of summer are quickly ticking away in preparation of a new school year.
The first day of school is Sept. 4.
“It’s always exciting to prepare for the first day of school,” Plante said. “The kids are just as excited as the teachers, even though the teachers sometimes don’t like to admit that.”
“You get that butterfly feeling where it’s back to school for everyone,” he said.
A royal welcome
Close to 480 freshmen will be coming into WHS this fall and Plante said the school will be waiting with open arms.
“One thing that is interesting for me to see is the kids that are coming from middle schools,” she said. “This is a big step for them and sometimes I think we forget that.”
Plante said she has already seen a steady stream of students and teachers preparing for the new year by finding their way through the school and getting their classrooms set up.
“It’s always exciting to see that,” she said. “It’s refreshing.”
One new initiative that WHS will be implementing this school year will be its new electronics policy, which aims to regulate the use of electronics in the classroom.
“We want to put some guidelines around bringing your cellphone to school and how you can use it,” Plante said. “Because of course we want to encourage its use, but we also don’t want it going off every two minutes in the classroom. I think the kids will like the way it’s turned out and I think the parents will as well.”
Plante said she is looking forward to this school year, especially in terms of finalizing how the high school Spanish Immersion program will look when it is implemented in 2013.
“I’m really looking forward to getting that finalized and set for parents,” she said, “so that it’s there, it’s solid and parents know what they’re going to get.”
Plante said she has hopes for this school year.
“I think it’s going to be a great year,” she said. “It’s just going to be the best one ever.”
Rounding up the Raptors
Harper mirrors Plante’s sentiments that he is ready for the new school year to start.
“The beginning of the year in general is a lot of work,” he said.
East Ridge will see a total of 370 new freshmen this year – including Harper’s oldest son.
“That will certainly be a unique twist,” he said. “There might be some added pressure of having the principal’s son in class.”
Harper said one element that he is most looking forward to this school year is the full implementation of the Project Lead the Way curriculum.
“That’s kind of cool because it’s taken us four years to get there,” he said. “It’s the evolution that’s taking place.”
Harper said he has also seen an evolution within East Ridge’s culture now that the school has finally started to be accepted.
“People understand what the black and gold is now and they understand the East Ridge way and what we’re about – they value being a part of it,” he said. “It’s been a process but I think we’re there.
“It’s year four, so we’re almost out of the infant stage; we can start calling ourselves toddlers now.”
Harper said he fully expects this school year to be a great one.
“We’re forecasting a 75 and sunny school year,” he said.