GRANITE CITY — Summer is almost over for children of the Granite City Community School District.
For the last two weeks, parents signed up their children for the 2015-2016 school year — which will start Aug. 19 — at Granite City High School or online. Registration for enrollment at GCHS, Coolidge Middle School, Grigsby Intermediate School, six elementary schools and the Early Childhood Center began July 23 and resumed Aug. 5 and Aug. 6.
“We had a lot of people showing up for registration,” Director of Student Services Donald Harris said. “A few Thursdays ago (July 23), we actually did the most we have ever done for online, where we processed 743 students for online registration. That’s a lot to do in one day. A lot of parents have been coming in. Yesterday (Aug. 5) we did close to 500 for the online with the online process helping them out here. So far overall, between kindergarten, the ECC (Early Childhood Center) and new students, we registered about 300. They can’t do the online process. They just do the paper and pencil process. The numbers are going good.”
Online registration for the school district began in 2013.
“It’s been going really good,” Harris said. “For those families who have not moved or have kept the same address or haven’t had any issues with mail being returned or anything along those lines, they can register online. They don’t have to come here. But those who have maybe moved or need to reprove residency, they come here and we all get that straightened out and get them their new address and they can register online. Those parents who haven’t moved can register online at home.”
Harris said having registration at GCHS is convenient.
“Everybody can do it in one place,” he said. “It provides a good venue. For those new students, it gives them an opportunity to walk around and meet their principals.”
On the final day of registration on Aug. 6, Harris stood at the GCHS campus directing parents and students — current and new — to registration sites and the school uniform swap sale. The sale was at the small gymnasium at GCHS. There, parents and students can buy, sell or swap school uniforms.
Harris said the uniform swap sale was usually held at the high school cafeteria, but the cafeteria is being remodeled.
“We offer a venue for them to trade clothes or sell clothes as part of the dress code,” Harris said.
Harris said the district had a large number of kindergarteners signing up.
“Mrs. (Kristen) Novacich (director of elementary education) did kindergarten registration during the spring and I think she said they did about 300 kindergarteners through registration,” Harris said. “Two Thursdays ago on the 23rd, we registered 72 kindergarteners. Yesterday (on Aug. 5), we registered 50.”
Harris, who has been working for the school district for 10 years, has been the registration coordinator since 2008.
“It’s a good job to have all of the staff under one roof meeting together and it helps familiarize everybody with different students in different levels,” Harris said. “Everybody can see what a kindergartener goes through all the way up to high school, so I look forward to it.”
Harris said he’s already excited about the first day of school.
“We’re used to having the first day as a half-day,” he said. “The state changed that requirement, so the first day is a full day for everybody. So when we get up and running, it’s a full day, even for kindergarteners. We have some orientation days before school starts for them to go in and get to walk around the buildings for the kindergarteners and for the students going into the new levels. At Grigsby, there’s an orientation day before school starts and the same thing at the junior high. For freshmen at the high school, they get a chance to walk around the buildings and kind of see some different things and familiarize themselves.”