“We are really excited to start the brand new school year today with all our kids,” said Lakota Superintendent Matt Miller.
Lakota East High School kicked off the new school year Thursday with its more than 2,100 students attending an opening day rally.
“We have had a lot of changes that have occurred from last school year to this school year,” said Miller as he waited shortly after dawn to greet students outside of Hopewell Junior School in West Chester Twp.
Lakota has attracted wide attention for its innovations in the past year and drew a short visit today from Ohio Schools Superintendent Paolo DeMaria, who toured schools with Miller for a few hours to witness some of the buildings’ new greeting programs.
Lakota officials had been touting a new style of introductions in welcoming back students, and Lakota East High School Principal Suzanna Davis delivered by holding a rare, all-school, pre-class rally in the school’s giant main concourse area.
Hopewell Junior School students entered their first day of school Thursday through a cheering tunnel of Lakota staffers.
Other schools, such as Hopewell Junior, saw excited students enter the new school year by walking through a human tunnel of cheering adults — including Miller — as they entered the building.
Students entering Lakota East High School in Liberty Twp. were greeted by upbeat dance music and walked through the school sports team’s inflatable tunnel.
“Today is based on learning about the East way, about getting to know each other and about getting to know your staff,” Davis told the crowd of students just minutes before joining some in a joyous dance.
Lakota East senior Landon Meador said he had never before seen a first day of school like it.
“It’s phenomenal,” said Meador over the loud crowd. “It takes off all the pressure of the first day and the stresses of the stereotypical first day.”