Summer has ended and a new school year has started.

For thousands of families in the Tyler area, Monday marked the first day of school.

The Tyler Independent School District kicked off a new year with excited students and families making their way to class.

At Andy Woods Elementary School, hundreds of parents walked their children to class before heading to the library for the first day of school “Yahoo and Boo-hoo” breakfast.

Parents mingled as students began to settle down in class and prepared to start learning.

Principal Georgeanna Jones said the first day of school is about setting expectations and making students feel at home.

“I want everybody to feel comfortable; I want the students to feel welcome,” she said. “I want them to know they’re safe here, they’re welcome here and hope they want to come back another day.”

Superintendent Marty Crawford said the district saw a much higher rate of pre-registered students this year, leading to an overall smoother first day. The district was at 18,050 students registered, not counting no-shows, compared to 17,300 pre-registered on the first day last year. The district likely will see an attendance spike this year with the addition of districtwide full-day pre-K and moving its Head Start classes onto neighborhood campuses.

Crawford said one of the few issues he saw with traffic was the entrance to John Tyler High School at Loop 323 and Lion Drive. The district has requested traffic assistance from the Tyler Police Department and put in a request to adjust the light’s timer to ease congestion.

Students at John Tyler also saw the first portion of new construction come into use with the completion of a new gym. Students will move into the new multistory academic wing after winter break.

Other districts that marked a new school year on Monday included Lindale ISD, Tyler Classical Academy and UT Tyler’s University Academy.

TWITTER: @TMT_Cory

Cory is a multimedia journalist and member of the Education Writers Association, Criminal Justice Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors. He has appeared on Crime Watch Daily and Grave Mysteries on Investigation Discovery.

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