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State College Area School District Students and Administration Get Ready for School Year

by on August 24, 2014 2:00 PM

Alexia Lambert is excited for a year of new experiences as a foreign exchange student with the State College Area School District.

The fifteen-year-old Paris native has been speaking English for seven years and says she thinks being immersed in American language and culture for the coming year will take her studies to the next level.

“I’m most excited to meet new friends,” Lambert says, adding that she’s already been given a warm welcome to State College by her host family. “They’re very open, and they’re always smiling. They’ve made me feel very comfortable.”

Cayden Robbins – one of two children in Lambert’s host family – seems to have gotten used to having Lambert around over the past few days, but he’s been distracted by the coming school year. Though he’s had a good summer, he says he's excited for classes to start on Tuesday.

“I want to see who’s in my class,” the soon-to-be fourth grader says, adding that he’s excited because he already knows his best friend will be there.

Cayden says his favorite subjects are reading and math. Though he admits he finds math boring, he says he can always feel proud of himself when he finishes a difficult assignment.

His younger sister, Myah Robbins, 7, says she’s also excited for the new year because she’ll have the same teacher her brother did in second grade. She’s confident about the upcoming year, and says she most looks forward to playing with her friends during recess.

The Robbins and Lambert aren’t the only one looking forward to a year of new experiences. The school district has made some changes and expansions, including a new level in its Delta program.

SCASD spokeswoman Julie Miller says the Delta program “is an alternative learning experience governed by a democratic process” that gives students greater control of their experience in school. Having previously serviced only grades seven through 12, this school year will be the first with grades five and six included in the program.

“We had to cap it at 80 students, so it filled up very quickly and we now have a lengthy waiting list,” Miller says. “We had a tremendous response to this option being available, so it’s very exciting to see how it plays back over the course of the year.”

SCASD student registration secretary Heather Card has been “extremely busy” as the school year draws closer. She’s been traveling all over the district to help families enroll children in their home schools. Though things may calm down some once classes start, she’ll still have plenty to do while helping maintain student records.

“I always enjoy meeting the new families and kids when they come into to register,” Card says. “Everyone has a story, and it’s always great to hear why people have come to State College.”

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Michael Martin Garrett is a general assignment reporter for StateCollege.com, a graduate of Penn State and a published poet. He's also a musician who plays bass in an indie rock band.
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