Delhi welcomes students for return of school year

Sarah Eames | The Daily StarLucas Thompson, a third-grader in Nicole Rossley's class, participates in a scavenger hunt designed to familiarize students with their new classroom on the first day of school Wednesday.

DELHI — Teachers, staff and administrators at Delaware Academy welcomed students Wednesday for the district’s 200th first day of school.

District Superintendent Jason Thomson joined Julie Mable, elementary principal, in greeting students with hugs and high-fives as they arrived before the bell.

“I just couldn’t be more proud of the district — our amazing teachers, amazing staff and outstanding students,” he said. “We’re off to a great start and we’re looking forward to a great year.”

Third-graders in Nicole Rossley’s class helped each  other find the classroom library, pencil sharpeners, work cubbies and other fixtures in their new classroom in a scavenger hunt.

John Wake, an elementary physical education and health teacher, is retiring after 18 years with the district and 34 years teaching.

“It hasn’t really sunk in,” said Wade, who also coached football, wrestling and track for 25 years. “Time flies when you’re not thinking about it.”

When asked what he will miss the most, Wake responded “the kids, the joy on their faces; helping them with little problems that are huge to them.”

Year to year, “the kids are basically the same, but how I teach health and the topics change,” he said. “What was being taught 25 years ago in the home maybe needs more reinforcement in the classroom now.”

For fifth-graders Lexi Davis and Logan Dean, the start of this school year also represents the beginning of the end.

“I feel like I’m almost there,” Lexi said of her coming middle school career.

Logan said he was sad to see summer end and isn’t looking forward to this year’s increased homework load.

Fourth-grader A.J. Richardson said he’s excited to learn how to play an instrument this year.

“I want to play the trumpet,” he said. “I started playing guitar before but I sort of stopped when we moved.”

Kierstin Griswold, an elementary reading specialist and Delaware Academy alumna, recalled teaching alongside some of her former teachers when she returned to the district 19 years ago.

She said she is still configuring her class schedule for the year and spent most of the first day “helping the students come in and find where they need to be.”

“It’s always nice to have a break, but you’re happy to see the kids again when they come through those doors,” Griswold said.

Sarah Eames, staff writer, can be reached at seames@thedailystar.com or 607-441-7213. Follow her @DS_SarahE on Twitter.

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