Consider this a welcome back to those whose schedules are a bit different in the summer and for that reason don’t listen to the Hometown View with regularity.

Maraianne Levys grandchildren Gia (entering 8th grade) and Deegan (enter 4th grade) are ready for to return to school. (Facebook)
First day of class at Ocean County College in Toms River (Facebook)

From teachers to parents of school-age children this week brings a dose of reality and the return of the alarm clock which is a stark reminder that summer vacation may have taken you away but it’s now time to see you and hear me in September.

(Thanks to The Happenings for allowing me to steal some lyrics).

All kidding aside we are often such creatures of habit and those habits are now taking on a different feel.  Many schools were back in session yesterday for teachers and staff only and some of them will welcome students for the first time today.

The first few days of school can be challenging and stressful for many, from parents taking a kindergarten child into the classroom for the first time to high school seniors already worrying about college prospects.

Throw in the fact there are always problems in the beginning of the school year with everything from schedules to lockers and you have a lot of stress.  The key is often patience and understanding which is something we have far too little of these days.

There were probably a few kids who didn’t sleep well last night because of those first-day jitters and that’s understandable.  The pressure on them is far greater than it was in my school days although regardless of the generation kids are always worried about fitting in.  We had bullying in my day but it was not nearly as malicious as it is now.

When I was in school you might get teased about your clothes, your hair or your glasses. With social media that stuff and more are often taken to a different level.  In truth though many of the same worries that existed in the 70’s are still around today but we are more aware of them.  We also know that the responses of those that are teased and bullied can be frightening for all involved.

So stealing lyrics from the theme song of Welcome Back Kotter:

“Welcome back, your dreams were your ticket out.
Welcome back to that same old place that you laughed about.”

I have no idea why I used this, especially since many of you have no idea who Mr. Kotter is or was.  Regardless…welcome back!