School begins in the Snoqualmie Valley for more than 6,000 students

 Amy Benolkin, with her 4 year-old daughter Lauren, stands outside her son Carter
Amy Benolkin, with her 4 year-old daughter Lauren, stands outside her son Carter's first-grade classroom, waving and taking pictures on the first day of school.
— image credit: Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Wednesday, Sept. 4, was an emotional day in Snoqualmie Valley, when Snoqualmie Valley schools opened their doors to more than 6,000 students. Hundreds of first-graders started life as full-time students that day, and a record freshman class of nearly 500 started breaking in their "new" school, the district's first freshman campus.

Waving good bye to her son, Carter, through the window of his first-grade classroom at Opstad Elementary, Amy Benolkin planned to go home and stage a big welcome-home event for him, with help from her 4 year-old daughter, Lauren.

Cater is among almost 3,100 elementary school students to attend Snoqualmie Valley this year, according to preliminary head counts. The district also counted almost 1,450 middle school students, and more than 1,700 high schoolers. Official enrollment numbers, which determine state funding, are reported in October.

boy jumping: Taking a leap, a Snoqualmie Elementary School first grader negotiates the agility toys on the school playground on the first day of school.

Showing off for his friends, a Snoqualmie Elementary first-grader clowns around on the swings during recess.

Racing each other to the playground, two Snoqualmie Elementary students start their first recess of the year with spirit.

Taking a short break from his first recess, Nolan Riley waits patiently for instructional aide Kim Buckmaster to finish tying his shoe on the Snoqualmie Elementary playground.

Boys try a game of tetherball during recess on their first day of school at Snoqualmie Elementary.

Two girls enjoy having the monkey bars to themselves for a few minutes during recess.


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