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It was the first day of school in Sylvania Schools -- W.E.F.S.K., What Every Freshman Should Know was the expression of the day Thursday for the first-year students at Southview High School.
Exactly 281 incoming freshman had Southview all to themselves for a special orientation that was mainly led by upperclassmen who took it upon themselves to show the newcomers the ropes and share some insider information about successfully surviving four years at the school. The same orientation was provided for the freshman at Northview.
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The 58 Link Leaders wore T-shirts displaying their top 10 list of advice to freshman.
At the top of the list was “Always keep a sweatshirt in your locker.” No. 3 on list, “Make friends with seniors by giving them food,” seemed slightly advantageous for the upperclassmen. The first-year students were advised that letting grades go by the wayside “is not cool” and they were urged to do their best academically.
“Every year, the upperclassmen come up with a new 10 tips advising things that teachers don’t necessarily know about, but it’s what the kids think is important,” said Jodi Hess, a counselor at Southview who coordinated the day-long transitional event.
Thursday was the first day of school in the district for grades 1 to 9. Upperclassmen will begin the school year today, followed by kindergarten on Monday. There are 12 schools in the Sylvania Schools district.
For freshmen, the day began with some fun games such as “Simon Says” and activities to get the “mojo flowing.” Later, students broke into groups with their Link Leaders, who had a slew of introduction activities to familiarize them with other students and the layout of the high school. The leaders will keep in touch with them throughout the school year. The freshmen also met with their teachers Thursday.
“I’m excited. I woke up at 6:15 a.m. today for school. I think it’s going to be a fun year,” said Brenden Anderson, 14.
He admitted that his mom made him pose for pictures before he headed out the door for Southview. Besides the new high school experience, Brenden was looking forward to playing on the football team and being one of the first to play at Southview’s new and first ever football stadium.
This year there are 1,204 students at Southview. Earlier this week the district reported enrollment at 7,485. Last year, it was 7,431. District spokesman Nancy Crandell said that enrollment was not closed and that people were still signing up students. She expected an increase of at least 100 students this year.
Angela Schaal, Central Trail Elementary School principal, said that parents were registering children for kindergarten on Thursday.
“I am very happy they are in good hands,” said mom Emily Gould. A mother of seven, she has five children in the district, three of which are attending Central Trail, one of which was Matt, 5. He and she visited on Thursday to drop off supplies for his first day of kindergarten.
Although Matt was bashful, hiding behind his mom, he did say he was looking forward to riding the bus with his two older brothers, first grader Nick and second grader Alex.
Alex, 8, said he and his brothers had a good summer and just returned from a trip to Australia. He was happy to be back in class and was especially looking forward to reading class and picking up a book from his favorite series Minecraft.
Contact Natalie Trusso Cafarello at: 419-206-0356, or firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @natalietrusso.