Session helps Lake Forest students acclimate
8/21/12 Janita Reehl of the Deerpath Middle School Association for Parents and Teachers takes a photo of fifth- and sixth-graders new to the school on Aug. 21. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
Updated: August 30, 2012 5:08PM
LAKE FOREST — Starting at a new school is always hard, but some 30 newcomers at Deer Path Middle School had the rough road smoothed somewhat at a special orientation for new families Aug. 21.
Finding their classrooms, meeting the school nurse and knowing where the kids hang out before the bell rings was part of two morning sessions, one for fifth- and sixth- and the other for seventh- and eighth-graders.
Chloe Tzau, an incoming fifth-grader who moved from Vernon Hills to Lake Forest in June, admitted she was nervous before entering her new school for the first time.
“It isn’t as big as I thought it would be,” she said, adding that this was a relief.
Victoria Angelos, an incoming sixth-grader, found the walk-through and opportunity to meet other new students a helpful step in getting ready for her first day at DPMS.
“It made me feel more comfortable,” Angelos admitted at the close of the 90-minute orientation. “Seeing what the classes are going to look like, I feel a lot more comfortable.”
Seventh-grader Izie Andress was among a group of tie-dye T-shirted seventh- and eighth-grade volunteers who led the new students in small groups around the school, pointing out classrooms, the media center, cafeteria and the location of the restrooms, as well as imparting sage wisdom.
“Don’t go into the wrong bathroom. A friend of mine accidentally did that,” Andress told new fifth-graders Katelyn Post and Alma Mackic.
“You guys are actually getting a head start,” Andress assured her charges. “The other kids don’t get this kind of tour.”
After the tour, Post realized the first day of school would be OK.
“It’s not really that much different than my old school. It’s bigger, a lot bigger, but this makes me feel better,” Post said.
Parent David Tzau attended the orientation with his daughter, Chloe.
“It looks great,” David Tzau said of the school. “We’ve heard a lot of great things about the school. We’re looking forward to it.”
Maria Angelos said her family moved to Lake Forest in July primarily for the schools.
“We did a lot of research and on paper, they looked great,” Maria Angelos said. After completing the orientation, Angelos was reassured her family made the right decision.
“We’re so excited,” she said.