The halls are alive with the sound of students 

Portables finally removed from Myrtle Philip

Falling leaves from trees and showery days can mean only one thing to kids.

It’s time to get back to school.

Last week hundreds of local kids packed their backpacks and headed back to the classroom.

At Myrtle Philip every seat was full. The school has even had to take on a new teacher with student numbers settling in at 316.

"It’s been hectic, but it’s been a good start," said principal Ron Albertin, who could been found chatting to students and parents in the hallways and outside as everyone settled into their new routine.

Several parents from the Spring Creek catchment area also elected to move their kids to Myrtle Philip.

The moves, said Spring Creek principal Linda Watson, were not a reflection of dissatisfaction with the new school, but rather a result of the families’ desire to have the kids schooled closer to home.

Those students from out of the catchment area who are now in Myrtle Philip will not need to go through the application process each year, said Albertin.

"We have been told that if they (the students) are in your catchment and in your school and they remain there then you will be staffed accordingly," said Albertin.

High numbers for Myrtle Philip meant some teacher and classroom juggling so kids spent the first couple of days with last year’s educators. But by the beginning of this week just about everything was in place.

Gone, however, were the portables that have for so long graced the back of the school.

"The area they occupied has been rough graded for now," said Albertin adding that discussions are underway about what to do with the space.

It’s unlikely the area will have grass laid, as there is no irrigation in place.

But, said Albertin, the space might work for an outdoor sport such as volleyball.

With school underway the focus is on the school’s core values: honesty, caring, respect and responsibility.

"Everyone needs to remember those," said Albertin adding that parents also need to get kids to school on time.

"We are also looking for parental involvement in the school. Everything from helping out on the playground to all the great things that go on in the class."

Parents who fill volunteer positions through which they might be alone with children must undergo police checks, said Albertin.

He is hoping that parents will get involved in the literacy program at school, which he considers one of the most important goals.

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