Dawn of a new school year in Austin

Published 9:47 am Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Owen Carroll shows off his desk as a Green Gopher to his dad John Carroll Tuesday before the first day of school at Woodson Kindergarten.

Students lined school yards and street corners this morning, anxiously awaiting the official start of the 2010-11 school year.

With temperatures not yet reaching 60 degrees, accompanied by blowing winds, the weather helped those who had still been clinging on to summer to let go and embrace the start of yet another school year.

“Summer was a blast,” said Pacelli junior Stacy Krzyzanowski. “(Today) it’s not like you want to be outside.”

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Krzyzanowski hung out at her locker in the early morning, discussing the season that had passed and the start of the year with Heather Wolf, a Pacelli senior.

“I’m nervous, but I’m excited.” Wolf said. “I’m hoping it’s going to be a fun year.”

Both Wolf and Krzyzanowski agreed that the start of the year was an opportunity to begin fresh with new teachers, classes and an unfamiliar schedule.

While many seniors opt for an easy route, taking on the “senior slide” attitude, Wolf said that’s not the case for her. She’s forging ahead this year with a challenging schedule, optimistic that she’ll make it work.

For those on the younger end of the spectrum, the start of the new year brings about the same feelings of anxiousness — only in a different context.

Jonathan Estrada, a third grader, arrived at Sumner Elementary School with his parents before the start of classes. While Estrada was eager to meet new friends and kick off the new season, he said he was hesitant because he had never attended classes at Sumner before.

“I’m a little bit nervous because it’s my first year in school here,” he said.

Despite the anxious feelings, Estrada admitted there was one thing that had him excited: learning.

Over in the parking lot and courts at Pacelli Elementary School, parents and teachers watched on as students used their back-to-school energy to run around and greet one another.

“It’s a little bittersweet,” said Shelley King, a mother of two elementary students and a host this year to a senior foreign exchange student from Columbia. “They love school, but I like having them at home, too. But it is exciting overall.”

Patty Ulland, a third grade teacher at Pacelli Elementary School, said she’s always excited at the start of the new season.

“There’s a whole new group of students,” she said. “You get to learn new names and learn all their different personalities.