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The first day of school in Springfield forge memories that last a lifetime

SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WGGB) — For students all over the City of Springfield the beautiful summer day we all enjoyed on Tuesday marked the return to the classroom for students all over the city.

Because of last June’s tornado classes at the Brookings School will wait until Wednesday to open. 

But for kids at Dryden Elementary school in East Forest Park, they ended last year with a tornado, and began this year with Tropical Storm Irene.

No matter how far removed it gets, we all remember our first days of school.  And while not many of us have ever spent our school years experiencing a tornado or tropical storm, we can all appreciate how special a day like today can be.

“Mother Nature is just speaking out loudly to our area,” said Diane Brouillard, principal at Springfield’s Dryden Elementary School.  ” And we’re showing Mother Nature that we can get through very smoothly.”

Another first day of the school year.  A day that’s celebrated in every town, by every child from Pittsfield to Provincetown.

Tuesday morning under a crystal blue umbrella sky, families of the Dryden Elementary School continued an All-American tradition.

Summer vacation was over.  The June tornado and Tropical Storm Irene were nothing more than distant memories.  Because Tuesday morning in East Forest park it was a day to start making new memories.  Happy memories that will last these families a lifetime.

“You always remember your first day of school,” said Bouillard  You’re anxious to see the teacher.  You’re anxious to see all your classmates again.  “Anxious to see what the year is going to bring.   What’s new for the year, and what’s the same.”

“The things we’ve had to overcome in the past year with the tornado, earthquake, and the weather and hurricane,” said Matt Ferri.  Ferri’s three daughters are students at Dryden.

“This is a welcomed day and my children are excited as we are, my wife Jennifer, to be part of the Dryden Family.”

It was obvious that the families at Dryden do share a common bond.  Last June the tornado ripped through their school, sending more than 250 students to finish the year at the nearby Frederick Harris Elementary School.

There were opportunities to change, to not return to their Little school on Surry Road.  But most families did come back.

Hugs and smiles ruled the day on Tuesday, the first day of the new school year.

“We stayed because we thought it was a good school,” said Scott Lester, the father of two students at Dryden.   “The school is good, they quickly rebuilt it.  I think we’re in pods now.”

“We enjoy the teachers here and the principal here.  They have good programs here so we believe it’s going to work for our students.”

“Last year the girls really bonded with the school,” said Jennifer Ferri.   “It was their first year, and after everything that they went through with the new principal, the snow on the roof, and missing days through the tornado.”

“It’s just that they wanted to see their friends again.  They wanted that bond that they all made that last few weeks in June.  They really wanted to come back.”

The first day of the new school year.  It remains the same down through the years.  It did at Dryden Elementary, for a little girl who will start her sophomore year of high school tomorrow. 

No matter the person or place, the first day of school is always special.

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WGGB encourages readers to share their thoughts and engage in healthy dialogue about the issues. Comments containing personal attacks, profanity, offensive language or advertising will be removed. Please use the report comment function for any posts you feel should be reviewed. Thank you.
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