Local News

School Bells Ring

Posted Updated

RALEIGH — Readin', writin' and 'rithmetic are no longertaught to the tune of a hickory stick, but the first day of school isstill the first day of school. The 1997-98 school year starts today.

In Wake County, 700 yellow buses are rolling to pick up children fromelementary through high school grades. The school system is still 25drivers short, so some buses will have to run double shifts to handle allthe kids.

School officials ask parents to be patient if theirchild gets home 30 to 45 minutes later than expected this afternoon. Thedouble shifts take time to run. Areas most affected by the driver shortageare Cary, Apex, Leesville and Millbrook.

The double shifts may last six to eight weeks. The school system islooking for more drivers, but new hires must also undergo training.Officials have let parents in affected areas know that their children maybe late.

Police expect to be especially vigilant to see that motoristsobey reduced speed zones near schools. And there will be more officers onthe streets -- the regular patrol is being supplemented temporarily bysome special operations officers.

Police expect the increased visibilityof patrol cars to help remind drivers that, despite Labor Day and theautumnal equinox still ahead of us, summer is now over.

Now. Is everyone in their places, with bright, shiny faces? And let'snot always see the same hands.

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