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Transition Day introduces students to their new school


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Photo by Alexis A. Goring. Principal Mark Covington and Assistant Principal Glenise Marshall answer questions from their incoming students at Samuel Ogle Middle School.

Photo by Alexis A. Goring. Principal Mark Covington and Assistant Principal Glenise Marshall answer questions from their incoming students at Samuel Ogle Middle School.

Published on: Wednesday, September 04, 2013

By Alexis A. Goring

Samuel Ogle Middle School was one of many educational institutions across the county’s public school system that hosted Transition Day for the 2013-2014 school year.

Transition Day, which took place Aug. 15, is designed for incoming sixth, seventh, and ninth graders. The time they spend at the school enables the new students to identify resources that will aid in their academic and social success. Students who attended Transition Day learned more about their new school, met teachers and were introduced to their student guides.

“For me, in my mind, Transition Day is not only to set the tone for the students as they’re coming in but more importantly to put their minds at ease,” said Mark Covington, principal of Samuel Ogle Middle School. “There’s always anxiety the kids have making that change, and I really feel like it’s imperative for the adults to really address that, put it up front and talk about it and give the kids a chance to get it out so that when they come in on Monday it’s that whole ‘Ah’ thing and they’re relaxed.”

Covington said Samuel Ogle Middle School will have a “last-like focus” on instruction and shifting to Common Core standards.

“But also there’s that other aspect of being in school, the more social-emotional aspect that I’m also excited about,”

 Covington said. “We have middle school sports that are back. Here at Samuel Ogle, we have all kinds of clubs and organizations. … I’m very excited about that to give those kids another outlet and another way to really connect with the school itself.”

Amina Rauf, an eighth-grader at Samuel Ogle, recalled her first Transition Day.

“It was slow at first at like finding friends, but as soon as people started talking to me, it started to pick up and it was really fun,” she said.

Lisa Smith is a parent of a student who attended his first Transition Day.

“My son is an incoming sixth grader from Northview. So this is a new environment, a new neighborhood,” she said. “He’s a little nervous. I’m a little nervous, but he’ll be okay. I also have a kindergartner starting down the street so everything is brand new for us this year.”

Smith said the Transition Day seemed “seamless.”

“I’m looking forward to the entire year going seamless,” she said. “I’m not sure that it will, but I’m hoping that it will.”

Assistant Principal Glenise Marshall said she is excited to start the new school year and help mold young minds.

“I’m very excited that we have sixth-graders coming in because when sixth-graders come to middle school, they don’t realize yet that it’s the beginning of them focusing on what they want to do as an adult, which means that we help shape and change their mind from the playfulness to becoming serious about academics and what academics can do for them in the long haul as far as getting into middle school and advancing to high school and, of course, getting them ready for college and careers,” she said.

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