Park Elementary first-grade students Norah Dowd, left, and Jaylyn Scott pal around on the playground on the first day of the school year, Aug. 18. The two agreed that outdoor recess is their favorite part of the school day.

Kelly Misch 440-286-0409

Hilltoppers welcome school year

The Chardon Local School District kicked off the 2021-2022 school year on Aug. 18, welcoming students in grade levels one through 12 and initiating kindergarten screening. Kindergarten students embarked on their first official day via a phase-in schedule that began Aug. 23, the same day that pre-kindergarten students commenced the school year.

The district welcomed several new staff members, including Chardon High School Assistant Principal Amanda Bondi; high school physical education and health teacher Brad Hilliard; Chardon Middle School instrumental and general music teacher Michelle Watson; Chardon Early Learning Center intervention specialist Sarah Gatto; business affairs secretary Michelle Jokinen; high school clerical assistant Alyssa Smalley; bus driver Bonnie Vyner and bus assistant Melvin Forbe; cafeteria monitors Mindy Haines, Christine Moore and Amie Walland; and latchkey program staff members Kelley DeFranco and Leah Nash.

During the Aug. 16 Chardon Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Michael P. Hanlon, Jr. introduced seniors Morgan Fisher and Sebastian Marker as the 2021-2022 student liaisons to the school board.

Staff members and students alike also shared what they all look forward to looking ahead at the new school year, including kindergartner giggles, meeting student needs, helping others, working with the community and district, spending recess with friends and more.

Munson Elementary second-grader Mikey Bice II said, “Seeing familiar faces and seeing familiar faces that I haven’t seen for a long time” is what he looks forward to most while sharing a lunch table with classmate Vincent Marotta, who said he looks forward to getting to know his new teacher.

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