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Bulloch public schools open Monday

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In this Herald file photo from 2007, two students at Nevils Elementary School fifth graders are shown on the first day fo school. The 2009-10 school year begins Monday in Bulloch County.

       Brooklet Elementary School principal Marlin Baker said the first day of school for him is kind of like Christmas.
      "There's all this build up and excitement," Baker said. "And then the first day of school is here and the presents we get are the children. I really look forward to it."
       More than 9,200 Bulloch County public school students are expected Monday when the 2009-10 year begins.
"We don't have a new Southeast Bulloch opening or are moving into an unfinished school," said Lewis Holloway, superintendent of schools. "This is the least stressful first day I've had since I started (in 2007)."
       A finished Statesboro High awaits students with a stunning new auditorium and gymnasium. Ground was broken in May for a new Julia P. Bryant Elementary and construction of a new Sallie Zetterower should begin later this year. Plans for a new Mattie Lively also are expected this year.
       But physical construction will not interfere with students as they start the school year.
       "I have no worries about the first day," Holloway said. "I have complete considence in our staff that we are prepared to do our jobs of educating children."
       The year does begin with looming budget cuts mandated by Gov. Sonny Perdue that could slash Bulloch's budget by about $1 million later this year. Teachers lost two pre-planning days last week as part of the cuts and will lose a third in the coming months.
        But when school starts Monday, the students take center stage, Holloway said.
       "I love for school to be in," Holloway said. "I guess I'm kind of like a preacher. I want my congregation in church."

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