Unless you’re a parent with children entering kindergarten, the first day of school on Monday is almost anticlimactic. Preparation has been the key.

If you don’t understand why the first day of kindergarten is an emotional experience, you’ve never had a child in that situation.

Even so, most families in this area with children of school age are today enjoying the last weekend of summer. But for those involved in many extracurricular activities — football, volleyball, band, cheerleading and other fall semester pursuits — summer ended several weeks ago. The back-to-school sales tax holiday has come and gone, and school supply lists have been 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 had “meet the teacher” programs for parents and students.

It’s time for school to begin now, indeed.

For some students, the new year will 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. Even more are yet to come.

Bangs students and educators are still several months away from occupying their new high school and other renovated campuses, but excitement about those facilities is swelling as the structures near completion.

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 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 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