Students and parents were excited and anxious as they returned for the first day of school in the Porterville Unified School District on Thursday, reported staff and the students themselves.

“There were lots of smiling faces this morning, ready to greet their new teachers for the year,” said Belleview Elementary Principal Crystal Milinich.

“Our staff was as excited as the students, anxious to see them as well. Teachers and our support staff have worked hard over the past week getting everything ready for students. The first few days of school, teachers and students join together in team building lessons and activities inside of the classrooms. 

We also engage in activities that build our school community. All students take a tour of the campus with their own PAWS Passport. They visit each area of the school such as the cafeteria, library, office, restrooms, and playground and learn the expectations of each area. Students then get their passport stamped at each location and take it home for their parents to see.” 


Milinich said a great new opportunity this year in Porterville Unified School District is the Extended Transitional Kindergarten Program. Any child who turns 5 by May 28, 2020 is eligible to enroll. For more information contact the PUSD Enrollment Center at 793-2487.


Everyone at Los Robles Elementary school was excited to begin the new year, and all the teachers as well as students had a lot to say. 

“Today was my 32nd first day of school at Los Robes and I’m just as excited as my first! I couldn’t wait to meet my new students,” said second grade teacher Quinnane Geurin-Short.


Fourth grade teacher Annie Nanamura said, “I am excited and very much looking forward to a positive and productive year. We are starting the year with great energy and a desire to grow our students.” 


“This is a great class I am so excited and am looking forward to challenging my students and watching them grow,” said Lori Lienau, who teaches third grade.


“I am excited and grateful to be at such a great school with a strong support system. My students are here and they’re excited! It’s hard to put all the emotion into words,” said an excited Adrianna Velasquez, who also teaches third grade.


Students were nervous and excited and said what they felt about being in school again:

“I was nervous, but excited because I got the best teacher ever!,” said Brandalyn, a second grade student at Los Robles. And another second grader, Vienna, also said she was nervous, but, “then I went to my teacher’s class and I knew it was going to be a fun year.”


“This is one of the best first days of school,” said Isaac, and fifth grade student from Los Robles. 


Crystal, a fourth grade student, said, “I feel happy because coming to school is a privilege and I am ready to work hard.” 


Patrisia Espinoza, who’s the new principal at Los Robles Elementary said, “As a new principal I am feeling so honored to be leading Los Robles School. We have a strong staff and this year we will continue to work hard on the initiatives that have already been established, academic discourse, higher level cognitive questioning, and social emotional learning. 


“We plan to focus on implementing Multi Tiered Support Systems (MTSS), specifically building up our Tier II in order to support all of our students with their academic and social emotional learning. I am looking forward to a legendary 2019-2020! Go Lobos.”

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