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Bruin Day Activities Hint At Coming School Start
Bruin Day 1
Riverbank High School students participating in Bruin Day activities are greeted by school staff in the lobby of the Fauria Gymnasium, ready for class schedules, school year information and paying fees. The Aug. 1 event saw students scheduled to attend at different times throughout the morning, depending on their class year, so as to avoid being too crowded to get things done. Ric McGinnis/The News
Bruin Day 2
One feature of the Bruin Day activities on the RHS campus was the taking of photos for student ID cards. There was room for three camera stations which allowed for a minimum of standing in line. Also added was a cable connection to printers that produced the finished photo ID in about ten minutes. Same day service that took several weeks in the past. Ric McGinnis/The News
Bruin Day 3
Brand new Assistant Principal Kellie Felix got to help hand out the finished Associated Students ID card to students with a minimum amount of waiting after their photo was taken. Felix said one of the benefits she found of this assignment was the opportunity to meet so many of the students individually. Ric McGinnis/The News

Among activities at local schools that have given students just a peek at the upcoming school year, last week’s Bruin Day at Riverbank High School gave them the opportunity to prepare for what’s ahead.

New and returning students were invited, hour by hour, class by class, to gather in the Ray Fauria Memorial Gymnasium to take care of such housekeeping duties as paying fees, collecting class schedules and taking photos for their student ID cards.

A recent improvement to the latter process featured the use of three camera stations, eliminating long lines. In addition, there were cables wrapping around the end of the gym to three special printers.

That allowed for production of the finished Associated Student Body Cards in about 10 minutes. In years past, the photos were taken and cards made back in the lab.

They would be received in the school’s business office in a couple of weeks, and students would take forever to come collect them. Often it wouldn’t be until they needed them to get into a dance or a football game.

Students picked up the finished cards same day this time and were greeted by brand new RHS Assistant Principal Kellie Felix. She said that it was the best part of her duties that day, getting to meet, individually, so many of the students.

Another feature at Bruin Day was the opportunity to purchase PE clothes, and meeting with football coaches and players, who were recruiting that day, along with meeting Band Boosters members. They also had the chance to purchase a school yearbook at a price that is the lowest it will be all year.

Meanwhile, the Riverbank Unified School District has organized a week of ‘Back to School’ Nights so parents can become informed as to their students’ activities and schedules for the coming year.

Interim District Superintendent Craig Rydquist announced the schedule, with each campus on different nights, to accommodate families with students enrolled at more than one campus in the district.

“Riverbank Unified School District (RUSD) is committed to providing an outstanding educational program for students, families and the community. Student learning is our focus, through providing effective and rigorous instruction,” he said. “Each day, the use of technology is provided to all students as a tool to stimulate learning as well as preparing them for the world in which they live. And each day, meaningful instruction occurs, therefore, it is important all students attend school every day unless they are sick. School attendance matters.”

He also noted that support of education by families is vital to the learning for each student.

The Back To School evenings will be held on four days next week. Starting on Monday, Aug. 12, it’s Adelante High School. On Tuesday, Aug. 13, it’ll be California Avenue, Mesa Verde, and the Riverbank Language Academy.

On Wednesday, Aug. 14, Cardozo Middle School hosts its night, then on Thursday, Aug. 15, the program concludes at Riverbank High School.

Rydquist continued, “Family attendance will demonstrate to students how much they value education and is a great way to learn about what the students will be learning during the school year. Family support matters.”

The interim superintendent noted some changes coming to the district. On Nov. 6, 2018 the voters of Riverbank passed Measure G and funds received from Measure G will be used to repair and upgrade facilities at the schools including but not limited to items to improve campus security, modernize science labs and repair buildings.

“Some projects have already started, while others are in the identification and planning phases. Work will be completed during the next several years.” Rydquist said.

Over the weekend, the school district officials also issued a statement announcing that Mrs. Christine Facella “is the finalist for the position of Superintendent.”

It was a search that began near the end of last school year, when Dr. Daryl Camp announced he would be leaving the district for a job in San Lorenzo. He had served for eight years as the head of the Riverbank district.

Pending final negotiations of a contract, officials expect that “ratification of the appointment” for Facella – the current assistant superintendent – will occur on Sept. 3 at a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees.