Grand Island Central Catholic was enveloped in positive energy Tuesday as the school had its first day of school.
Principal Jordan Engle said the first day of school went “totally awesome” and that it is good to have students back in the building.
“Having kids back in here is cool because it is fun to have that energy in the building,” he said. “The kids are excited to be here and we are excited to have them. Our kids are the best and our staff is the best, too. It is fun to be around people who are such a joy to be around. All of our kids and staff are good that way with each other. Our staff loves our kids and our kids love our staff. It is just a joy to be around.”
Seniors Allison and Avery Kalvoda said they are excited to be back in school, especially as seniors.
“We can be in the senior lounge and be leaders for everyone else,” Avery said. “It is also our senior season for volleyball, so it will be fun to go out there and be the leaders on the court and just have fun.”
Allison Kalvoda said while she was “a little sad” summer is over, she is glad to be back so she can see all her friends, “hang out with them and see everyone else you haven’t seen in a while.”
Avery Kalvoda said her main goal for the upcoming school year is to make the best of her last year at GICC.
“My main goal is to just have the best senior year since it is our last year here,” she said. “I just want to do good in sports, too. I want to be a good leader, show all the little kids how to act properly in school and get good grades.”
Monika Peters enjoyed her first day ever at GICC as the school’s new instrumental music teacher. She said she is teaching 6-12 band, co-teaching junior high choir and starting up a senior high show choir.
“It has been really easy,” she said of acclimating herself to GICC. “The staff here is really nice, welcoming and more than happy to help. I am older and not as technology-oriented as some. So they are willing to help me out because that is probably the biggest transition. I am transitioning to a different computer system, grading system and attendance system. That has been the biggest struggle for me.”
In his second year as principal, Engle said there was “a totally different feel” on the first day of school Tuesday. He said he has more confidence and knows what he is getting into for the upcoming school year.
“That first year is a ‘trial and error’ type thing,” Engle said. “Just knowing what is going on this year is a big difference and knowing students is awesome.”
Some of the key changes this year at GICC, Engle said, are the expanded programming with the addition of junior high and high school show choirs, as well as one-acts. He added the school has six new staff members this year and a new campus chaplain, the Rev. Sid Bruggeman.
Engle said GICC also has a newly updated chapel and a science room this year.
“There is just tons of positivity throughout the building,” he said. “I don’t want this first day excitement to die. I talked a lot with my staff about feeding that fire. Kids are going to come in with energy and if we meet them with that same energy, it won’t go away. So we want to keep that positive energy rolling straight through the school year.”