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Need to know: New for back to school

Alyssa Jackson
505-5438/@AlyssaJacksonYD
  • Central York has a new space where autistic students will practice independent living skills.
  • York City School District will continue its new "looping" initiative for students.
  • York Suburban High School and East York Elementary will have some new faces in the halls this year.

Back to school season is officially here in York County, and the hectic new school year already is underway for a number of schools in the area.

York Academy First Day of Kindergarten Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. Amanda J. Cain photo
Kelsie Byrd, 5, of Dover kisses her baby brother Liam, 2 months before she leaves for her first day of Kindergarten at York Academy Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. Amanda J. Cain photo
Joann Rodriguez, of York City, consoles her son Jacob Sanchez, 5, as he is reluctant to leave her before his first day of Kindergarten at York Academy Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. Amanda J. Cain photo


During the summer, administrators and teachers spent their time making changes. Even if a student has attended the school for years, when they walk through the doors on the first day of the new year, they're sure to notice a few differences.

Sara Goodwin, of Manchester Township, kisses her son Cooper, 5, before he leaves for his first day of Kindergarten at York Academy Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. Amanda J. Cain photo

Below are just a few changes from area school districts  that experienced some changes over the summer months. Representatives from other school districts did not respond.

York Suburban: Information provided by Superintendent Shelly Merkle

  • York Suburban Senior High School has a new assistant principal in Scott Shirey
  • Denise Fuhrman is the new East York Elementary principal 
  • The middle school will have a new schedule throughout the day 
  • High schoolers will experience a new flex period 
  • The middle school will have a new cafeteria
  • Indian Rock Elementary, East York Elementary and the middle school will have new secure entrances 

West York: Information provided by Superintendent Emilie Lonardi

  • Construction in West York Area High School as well as Lincolnway and Trimmer elementary schools is nearly done 
  • In September, a new website will be unveiled 
  • Breakfast and lunch prices at the elementary and secondary levels are changing: Elementary prices will be $1.05 for breakfast and $2.25 for lunch. Secondary school prices will be $1.25 for breakfast and $2.50 for lunch 

Central York: Information provided by Director of Communications and Marketing Julie Romig

  • There will be a new converted apartment-like space at the high school where autistic students can practice independent living skills 
  • A new family access portal, called Skyward's Family Access Center, will be implemented before the school year starts. Parents can see grades, calendars, assignments and more through the portal 

York City: 

Information provided by spokeswoman Erin James

  • The K-8 schools will expand their "looping program," where teachers stay with the same classroom for two years in a row before looping back to the lower grade level for the next group of kids
  • A new curriculum will be used this year in the district, with all new materials
  • A new website will be unveiled and operational at the end of August
  • Six new licensed social workers and five behavioral specialists have been hired to help students, make home visits and support students with mental health issues 
  • A new Pre-K classroom will be added, bringing the total number of Pre-K classrooms to 13

To learn more about what's new this year in your district, visit the district's website or contact your building principals.