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Chester welcomes back students on first day of school

Parents hold student's hand.
On the first day of the 2023-24 school year, the weather could not have been more beautiful to welcome back students. Teachers and staff greeted students as they entered the halls for the first time since June.

“On the first day of school, we extend a warm welcome to all students and their families,” said Superintendent Catherine O’Hara. “Together, we prioritize our students, look to the future, and work collaboratively as a team.”

Students were guided to classrooms after they met and caught up with their friends.

Three students eating lunch. “I have friends in my class that I can’t wait to see,” said Felix Vargas, first-grader at Chester Elementary School. He then listed off all of his friends one by one.

“I am excited to be back with my friends every day and have classes with them,” said Ariana Azeez, senior at Chester Academy. “I also get to use my senior privileges this year, which I am really excited about, like the senior lounge.”

Chester Academy Principal John Flanagan had some advice for students. “Be present, work hard, never give up and strive to reach your highest potential.”

New staff was also ready for the new school year.

“This is a new beginning for me at Chester Elementary School,” said Speech Pathologist Caitlin Reynar. “It is my first year here and I have felt so supported.” 

“My advice to students is to not be afraid to ask questions and have fun while learning,” she added.

“I’m looking forward to starting the college search,” said Evangelynn Perez, junior at Chester Academy. “I want to study zoology in college and the guidance department is helping me get an internship at a local veterinarians office.”

“I love my math and science classes,” said Maria Leon, fifth-grader at Chester Elementary School. “I want to be a teacher when I grow up.”

Some students are already looking forward to yearly events like Homecoming.

“I can’t wait to get dressed up and dance with my friends,” said Hayden Juarez, sophomore at Chester Academy.

“Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns, both this week and throughout the school year,” said Ms. O’Hara. “Wishing our students, staff and families a successful week and a productive school year ahead!”

Teachers helping students.

Students entering school.
Three students smiling.
Admin walking student off bus.
Two students smiling.

Two students smiling