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September 02. 2014 7:48PM

First day of school year goes smoothly in Litchfield

LITCHFIELD — The Litchfield School District joined many other districts from around the state when it welcomed students back to the classroom on Tuesday.

Superintendent Brian Cochrane, who is starting his third year with the Litchfield school system, said things were quickly back to normal once the doors opened Tuesday morning.

“It went very well today. We had the normal, minor glitches with buses and schedules and locker combinations, but by all accounts, I would say it was a good day,” Cochrane said after all three schools had closed for the day on Tuesday.

Cochrane had the opportunity to visit Griffin Memorial School, Litchfield Middle School and Campbell High School on the first day of school, meeting with principals and speaking with teachers.

“All three administrators seem to be happy with how things are going, and all of the teaching positions are fully staffed,” said Cochrane. “We have an excited and energetic teaching staff on board this year.”

Litchfield teachers recently attended three days of professional development workshops, preparing them for the year ahead. Staff has been working throughout the summer to align structural units across all of the various grade levels, focusing heavily on consistency throughout each grade, Cochrane said.

“We are moving forward with other initiatives as well. This is a busy time of year as an SB2 district, so we are about to begin the budget process,” he said. “It will be a busy year in school.”

Enrollment across the district is about average for the new school year, according to Cochrane, who said Campbell High School may experience slightly higher enrollment projections because of a large middle school group that has now advanced to the high school. As a result, the middle school enrollment will likely decline slightly, he explained.

Overall, he anticipates about a 1 or 2 percent decrease in student enrollment, which is what state education officials are also projecting for most school districts in New Hampshire.

At Griffin Memorial School, Cochrane said there were many excited and enthusiastic students, teachers and parents on Tuesday.

“There were a lot of parents there for the first day, and a lot of smiles and photographs,” he added.

khoughton@newstote.com


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