For most families with children of school age, the first day of school on Monday is almost anticlimactic. Preparation has been under way for several weeks. But the big day will arrive, finally, and it will arrive on Monday for most school systems.

Some students are still enjoying the last weekend of summer, but for those involved in many extracurricular activities - football, volleyball, band, cheerleading and other semester pursuits - summer ended earlier this month. The back-to-school sales tax holiday has come and gone, and school supply lists are being picked up and items purchased. Teachers have been preparing for the past week for the start of the new year, and many campuses have already held “meet the teacher” events for parents and students.

Even the weather - which is usually still scorching hot this time of year, has helped to signal the start of the fall semester with some rainy conditions. Unfortunately, Texas is still several weeks away from its real autumn.

For many students, the new year will - again - bring changes in the layout of their campuses. Students at the various Brownwood schools have become accustomed to ongoing changes as construction and renovations continue as part of the 2005 bond package, and considerable differences will be evident again.

Bangs students and educators are moving into their new high school. Construction continues on many Early school campuses, as well as the district’s football stadium, but significant renovations will be evident at the high school.

The first day of the school year is also a time for motorists to again pay attention when driving near any campus, because reduced speed limits are imposed at certain times of day - early in the morning and again when classes are dismissed. The hours those reduced limits are in effect are posted, and on some streets flashing lights call drivers’ attention to them. The best that can happen when motorists ignore these warnings is that they have to pay a traffic ticket with an added penalty. The worst that can happen is that a child will be seriously hurt.

Where did the summer go? Time passes quickly. As the new school year moves to the launch pad, best wishes are extended for a successful year to all students and educators.

Brownwood Bulletin