The big day finally arrived, as the Long Beach Unified School District welcomed about 67,000 students and their families to a new school year filled with hope and opportunity this week.
Students arrived at festive school entrances featuring balloon arches, large welcome signs, sidewalk chalk drawings, upbeat music, and in some instances, an actual red carpet. High-fives, fist bumps, hugs and good vibes were in plentiful supply.
“We’re super excited for the start of the school year; this week feels like a tremendous sense of optimism,” LBUSD Superintendent Jill Baker told lbpost.com, one of several news media outlets covering the first day of school. “There’s a lot of new things going on in our school district and we’re looking forward to the school year.”
Among those new things is full-day kindergarten, which is proving popular among parents, and a later start for high schoolers, who begin classes at 8:45 a.m. in light of recently passed state legislation. Kindergarten classrooms get all-new furniture, while Student Wellness Centers are expanding beyond high schools to include all middle schools.
Meanwhile some COVID-19 restrictions have been eased, in line with guidance from health officials. Most notably, masks are now recommended but optional. Several other COVID-19 prevention measures remain in place and are summarized in LBUSD's Back to School Guide, which also includes tips to help the first few days of school go smoothly.
Welcome back, LBUSD families! Have a great school year!