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Excitement, Improvements, Growth Highlight First Week of School

Lucerne Valley schools were busy with activity with the highest number of students in many years enjoying a variety of facility improvements and new programs, according to school and district administrators who each gave first-week-of-school reports.
Lucerne Valley Elementary School Principal Joanna Mora said students of all ages are thrilled with the improvements at the school, most notably the new artificial turf and improved play areas.  “The kids were loving it all,” she said at Thursday’s monthly school board meeting.
Besides the artificial turf, the school has some additional portable classrooms, “lots of paint,” and new teachers. LVES now has 35 teachers, five of which are TK-Kindergarten teachers, Mrs. Mora said. “Our staff is always going above and beyond for our school.”
Mrs. Manley added that on the first day of school there were a lot of parents, “and the kids were very excited to be back.”
Over the summer several LVES staff members attended conferences. In early June, Principal Joanna Mora and Assistant Principal Suzie Manley the Deloitte Courageous Principals Leadership Development Program in Westlake, TX. In July, teachers Carissa Brander and Stephanie Klinger attended the Ron Clark Academy Experience in Atlanta, Georgia, and at the beginning of June Jacob Rodriguez, who is moving over to the STEM Lab, attended the SmartLab Annual Conference 2023 in Broomfield, CO.
Assistant Superintendent of Schools Nate Lambdin touted “the outstanding leadership” at the Middle High School. With Jason Story taking over the principal duties and the versatile Jessica Haecker recently appointed to Assistant Principal position.
“These guys have done an incredible job,” Mr. Lambdin said.
Mr. Story talked about the addition of new portables and future work on the interior of classrooms. A new intercom and bell system was installed over the summer. Also Mt. View High School has joined the campus. The Middle High School also has started new social media accounts, specifically Facebook and Instagram, he said.
Ms. Haecker added that the students showed lots of enthusiasm at its first-day pep rally where they unveiled their new mascot.
Assistant Superintendent of Business Olga Fisher said that enrollment is at 1,111 students and Average Daily Attendance was about 95%. 
The week prior, school district staff came together for the annual Welcome Back Breakfast.
“It’s a good start to the school year,” said Superintendent Peter Livingston. “There was positive energy. It was a good start to the school year.” School Board President Jessica Risler agreed that the breakfast event set a positive tone. “The breakfast is always a special event to me.”