'I'm not scared' - little Layla on first day at Rivonia Primary

2017-01-11 12:33

Johannesburg – Most of Rivonia Primary School's first-graders appeared confident on Wednesday, although telltale signs of nervousness crept in as they clung to their parents on their first day of school.

- Parent24: Back to school

School principal Carol Drysdale said they had done their best ahead of the first day to ensure the children felt at ease.

"We invite all new Grade 1s and their parents to an orientation party in November. The children met their class teachers and had a bit of fun," she said, adding that she had met and addressed the parents on that occasion as well.

"From there on, it's plain sailing," she said.

Drysdale said that, when she met with the teachers on the eve of the school year, she had advised them: "All I want you to do is to smile and love your children."

Excited parents photograph their children
Excited parents photograph their children on their first day at Rivonia Primary School. (Gabi Falanga/News24)

She declined to comment on whether any children had been turned away from the school. Six years ago, the school was the centre of controversy after it refused to admit a child into Grade 1, claiming that the school was full. The Department of Education ordered the school to accept the pupil.

'I'm not scared'

After an extended court case, the Constitutional Court ruled that it was up to the provincial education department to decide how many learners could be admitted to a school.

Meanwhile, first-timers Layla Oberto and Paisley Michalaro huddled next to each other outside their new classroom, smiling broadly for their proud parents.

"Smile," coaxed Paisley's mom Kate Mol, as she took a photo of her daughter on her first day. "Paisley told me this morning she wants to become a teacher," Mol said.

Paisley, bouncing around excitedly, said: "I'm going to learn how to read!"

Her friend Layla was just happy that they were starting this new journey together.

"I'm excited because I'm with my best friend, I'm not scared," she said.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  education

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