Scottsdale students head back to school

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- It's the first day of school for many Valley students.

The new school year is officially underway at Navajo Elementary School and it was a mad rush to get to class Wednesday morning.

"Kids are ready," said Scottsdale Unified School District Superintendent Dr. David Peterson. "They've been coming here the last couple of days, meeting their teachers, visiting classrooms and we have great things going on in Scottsdale and we're pretty excited and proud of it."

"I've done my crying all week, I took the week off work so I could prepare," one mother said. "I'm excited for him. He's so ready to go to school and he's ready to meet new friends so that makes me excited."

Students were even more excited than their parents for the first day. They came decked out in all their new school clothes and carrying new lunchboxes and backpacks.

"I'm most looking forward to learning new stuff and the after-school program," one student said.

"I'm really excited," another girl said. "I really want to go to first grade."

There are some important things parents need to know for the new school year.

If you have a kindergartner in the Scottsdale Unified School District, Wednesday through Friday this week are all half-days so students will be out early.

Across the district, kindergarten through fifth grades will have one early release day a week throughout the school year. Also, elective classes like art and music will be every other day instead of every day of the week. The changes were due to the district's budget shortfall.

"We do have an override on the ballot for November," Peterson said. "Our goal is to be able to have a successful override so we can add more teaching staff, we can lower our class sizes and we can make sure that all the programs that our parents and our teachers and our students want, we're able to provide."

Keep in mind as you're going past school zones, the speed limit is 15 mph. Slow down and make sure you stop.

Police are utilizing mobile photo radar vans and boxes again this year to help enforce this.


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