Hammers, nails, students

| 02 Sep 2015 | 07:32

By Anya Tikka
— “It’s eight o'clock, and I’m pleasantly pleased, and a little surprised,” said Delaware Valley Superintendent John Bell, standing in front of the elementary school.

It was Monday, the first day of school, when students and faculty negotiate the changes that every new year brings. And with the DV campus this year also a construction site, the logistics were trickier than ever.

“I mean, we had to train everybody in where to drop off kinds, where to park," said Bell. "All the student parking is different, teacher parking is slightly different. It’s a lot of people to get here in the stretch of half an hour.”

The ongoing construction involves work on the swimming pool side that’s made the whole parking lot unusable. More than 100 spaces are out of commission. And, as the school year starts, only seniors can drive and park on campus.

“We did a lot of work trying to communicate this,” Bell said.

That included phoning messages to all high school students, putting out leaflets, and posting white signs on the district premises — all done, he said, with "a lot of help."

"There are a lot of teachers out there, helping," said Bell, beaming proudly. “It’s going to take a couple of days to get into this, and then it will be just normal."

The construction will continue until June. Until then, Bell said, “This is the way it’s going to be."

The school put a map on its website with a description of where all the parking lots are.

“People must have done a really good job of going on the web and finding out where everything is,” Bell said. “I only saw four or five cars that really didn’t know where they were going. I thought we might have a backlog this morning.”

The teachers and support staff were out in numbers, standing near the roads and entry points in case help was needed. But everything happened quickly and efficiently, and without incident.

"I’m thrilled," Bell said.