Genoa fifth graders start last day of elementary school

Genoa-Kingston School District returns for 2023-2024 school year

Reagan Davekos, (right) a fifth grader at Genoa Elementary School, talks to a classmate during the first day of school Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2023, in their class at the school.

GENOA – Faculty and staff welcomed students back to Genoa Elementary School for a new school year Wednesday, and for some of the students it’s their last first day of elementary school.

Raegan Davekos, 10, started fifth grade at Genoa Elementary on Wednesday, but her mind already is on middle school.

“I’m excited but also nervous,” said Davekos, thinking about what sixth grade will bring. “I don’t know how the new school will be.”

Rhonda Andrews has returned as the principal of Genoa Elementary School for the second year. After 22 years of working in Genoa-Kingston Community School District 424 she knows what goes into the start of a new school year.

“They [teachers] spend a lot of time decorating their classrooms and making sure they’re providing a really welcoming environment for the students, but then we go over what our common expectations are, and so we can impart them onto the students,” Andrews said. “We just plan for the best, and make sure we’ve got all the supervision covered and we know what we’re doing for the first day.”

Davekos has a year to wonder what life will be like at Genoa-Kingston Middle School, but she’s not the only fifth grader thinking about life in middle school.

Libby Cleveland, 10, said her last first day of elementary school was a fun one because she has a “really nice teacher” and a lot of friends in her class.

Elle Johnson, 10, said her first day of fifth grade was “pretty good,” but just wants to live in the moment before worrying about attending middle school.

Fifth grade student Case Bohne, 10, said he’s excited for his final year of elementary school but middle school isn’t as exciting of a prospect for him as it is for Davekos.

“Yeah, but you have no recess in sixth grade,” Bohne said.

Kylie Leitsch, a fifth grader at Genoa Elementary School, listens to her teacher during the first day of school Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2023, in their class at the school.
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