By JOHN HOWELL Sooner than first thought possible, Sherman Elementary School students - more than 300 of them - started their first day of in-person classes at the former Gorton Junior High School on Thursday. The transition wasn't without issues,
Sooner than first thought possible, Sherman Elementary School students – more than 300 of them – started their first day of in-person classes at the former Gorton Junior High School on Thursday.
The transition wasn’t without issues, including a traffic jam that snaked back to West Shore Road as parents sought to pick up their children. That delayed buses, raising the concerns of parents waiting for their children.
But traffic couldn’t over shadow the excitement of the Sherman community, from teachers and staff to students and parents.
Fourth-grade teacher Claudia Gandelman was thrilled with her sparkling classroom and that she could open the windows and let the fresh air and sunshine in.
“It feels like a new day. It feels like I know the students,” she said. Gandelman pointed out that she meet her students through distance learning and would know them as soon as they arrived. In preparation for that moment, she had bags with a poem and goodies on each desk and a bunch of balloons in the front of the room.
“They did a wonderful job,” she said of school maintenance crews who gave a thorough cleaning not only to the Gorton rooms but also to all of the furniture moved from Sherman. Mold was detected in Sherman in late August and even though cleanup crews went through the school, the administration deemed it prudent not to open the school and to step up scheduled improvements including a HVAC system. The plan is to reopen the school next year.
As kids were dropped off by their parents, they were greeted by the school mascot – a shark – as well as Superintendent Lynn Dambruch and Director of Elementary Education Patricia Cousineau. Additional school administrators assisted in directing the children as they disembarked from buses to the cafeteria where they gathered by class before lining up to be accompanied to their rooms.
Reached Tuesday, Principal Charlee McElroy said the flow of traffic is “getting a bit better every day.”
She called Sherman at Gorton “wonderful, good learning is going on.”
She said the Sherman community is together.
“It’s starting to feel like home.”