Summer’s end: School back in session today |

Summer’s end: School back in session today

Robyn Moormeister
Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal Mike Mitchell, director of operations for the Carson City School District, talks about the new pick-up and drop-off area being constructed at Eagle Valley Middle School to help alleviate traffic problems. Below, Mike Brown of Jet Construction works to level a new slide at the kindergarten playground at Bordewich-Bray Elementary School Monday with the help of Carson City School District groundsmen Mariano Vega, background left, and Bob Ruiz.

“It’s the end of summer,” Carson High School sophomore Jason Mather said Monday, standing outside his school’s front doors.

His golden tan and grown-out, shaggy haircut indicated a summer well-spent. “I’m kinda bummed.”

But the school district had no time to lament. Monday was its final day to sort out last-minute details.

School campuses throughout the city were bustling with teachers, administrators and construction workers Monday preparing for the anticipated – and sometimes dreaded – first day of school.

“It’s a day of meetings,” Carson City School District Superintendent Mary Pierczynski said, between meetings herself. “Teachers are meeting with staff members to make sure everyone’s on the same page with curriculum issues.”

While teachers ironed out schedules and prepped their rooms, the district’s operations department was scrambling to finish construction projects, like the new student drop-off/pick-up lane at Eagle Valley Middle School.

The lane is a circular dirt road just west of the school’s paved main entrance, with access off Carson River Road.

District Operations Director Michael Mitchell said the lane should relieve last year’s bottle-necking and backed-up traffic.

The district canceled busing for 300 of its students living out of the school’s two-mile radius in April, forcing most of their parents to drive their kids to school. Mitchell said the resulting traffic was a nightmare.

“It was pretty chaotic,” he said. “Absolute pandemonium.”

The city’s planning staff approached the school district last month with the idea of using the vacant district land for the new lane.

District workers began clearing sagebrush and laying dirt last week, and Building Maintenance Superintendent Mike Mortenson was at the campus with a frontloader and a shovel smoothing it over Monday.

“This could reduce a little road rage,” Mitchell said. “It should be a lot better.”

Workers also finished installing a slide, hopscotch lines and monkey bars at Bordwich-Brey Elementary School.

Funded by $3.7 million bond passed by voters in the 2002 election to build an addition to the new school, the playground is the finishing touch.

“The kids haven’t had a playground for over a year now,” Pierczynski said. “It’s so exciting.”

She said teachers, staff and students are ready for the new school year, but there may be a few parents who aren’t ready to send their kids off.

“We can’t wait for the kids to get here, especially the kindergartners,” she said. “The kids do fine, but as far as the crying goes, it’s more often the parents.”

Contact Robyn Moormeister at or 881-1215.