OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Westbrook Elementary School welcomed their students in a unique celebration to honor their return, and a new addition to their building. They rolled out the red carpet and let kids enter Westbrook's school building in style.
Westbrook's principal Tyler Hottovy said, "This is our Super Bowl. Our only job as staff, as teachers, as principals today is to make school so much fun that kids want to come back every single day beyond that, and if we can do that and we can start today on the right foot, we can make this a place where kids are excited to come."
Parents enjoyed sending off their children to school Wednesday morning. Some parents new to Westbrook even said they never experienced a special first day celebration, like this one, at any other school.
"I love that they do the red carpet for the kids, they make them feel welcome and feel like superstars. I love that the teachers are eager to meet everyone and eager to teach," said Kimberly Brown, a new parent to Westbrook Elementary.
This celebration surely won't be the end of fun for students this school year. Westbrook Elementary teamed up with the Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands to build an extension of their main school. This after school program will be available to all Westside Community District students, and gives them an innovative space to plan, learn and create.
The Hawkins Family Boys and Girls Club offers "reading programs, some academic programs, and homework help." said Hottovy. He said they'll have an opportunity to do things after school like robotics, coding, and they can even learn to fly a drone.
He said he envisions his school to be a hub for his students and families, and a support system all in one.
"We recognize that our students lives don't end at 3:30 PM when the school bell rings and school dismisses. So we have this area here in partnership with the Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands where families and students can come after school to be engaged in learning, in homework, in connecting with other students, connecting with the staff here and just a safe place to be all the way through the evening," Hottovy said.
Westbrook's staff is excited to welcome the students, and said it's a privilege to be able to work with kids and shape their futures.