September 4, 2008
‘Class of 2020’ Begins School
By STEPHEN BEALE
- Students were told their dreams could come true at school as they started classes at Maple Avenue Elementary yesterday.
Principal Marc Boyd told first through fourth graders they would find heroes in the school who are like their mothers and fathers. “I’m speaking about your teachers who will take you on a 180-day journey into a new world of wonder, fun, adventure, excitement,” Boyd said. “A journey that will teach you to read like your parents and … guardians, to understand like them and, like them, be able to deal with any of life’s problems.”
The Maple Avenue Elementary School welcomed back 508 students, including 131 first graders who will constitute the class of 2020 at Goffstown High School, Boyd pointed out in his opening remarks.
The first day ceremony began with the singing of the school song and the Pledge of Allegiance. Boyd then introduced the new teachers at the school and announced each class and its teacher as they filed into the building, to the accompaniment of band music played through large speakers to either side of the principal.
As the last students marched in, Boyd told the small crowd of parents to enjoy what remains of the summer. “In the immortal words of Martin Luther King, ‘You are free at last, free at last, free at last!’” Boyd quipped.
All Goffstown schools opened yesterday, including the Bartlett Elementary School across town. Since construction on an addition is underway, Principal David Bousquet said the school had suspended its traditional first day celebration. He said the school would have a grand re-opening around November, once all the work is completed.
The addition and renovation is about three weeks behind schedule, according to Ray Labore, business administrator for the school district. Labore said the work had started later this summer because of delays in the planning process and negotiations with the architect and contractor.
The addition will contain a lobby, conference room, and offices for the principal and secretary. Their former offices will be renovated into a room for a reading teacher, a new nurse’s office, and space for a separate bathroom for school staff, who currently use the same one as students visiting the nurse.
In the next week or so, the exterior will be finished. As workers move inside, Labore said the general contractor, Bonnette Page and Stone, of Laconia, will be operating on a second shift so the work will not disrupt the school day.
Overall, the first day was a good one for Goffstown, according to Labore. “From what we’ve heard on this end, it’s gotten off to a problem-free start, which is great,” he said.