Hamblen schools to host meet and greets to start school year

The excitement is palpable – a near-electric vibration is in the air:

Hamblen County schools return to full operating capacity next week much to the delight of administrators, educators and parents.

Students, maybe not so much, since Thursday, Aug. 5 means their summer break is over.

With the doors opening on what is hoped to be a much better year than was experienced for 2020-2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, several schools are opting to embrace the school year by bringing back a top priority event scuttled last year: meet and greets.

The meet and greets are designed to allow students, parents/guardians and teachers the opportunity to say hello, introduce themselves to each other, maybe get a quick peek at classrooms and, with many fingers crossed, get the 2021-2022 academic year started on the right foot.

Below is a list of meet and greets for each school, along with the dates for 6th grade orientations for middle school students. For schools noted, no meet and greet is scheduled; instead an open house will be scheduled for a later date.

Elementary schools:

Alpha Primary and Intermediate: 3 – 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3 (both schools)

Fairview-Marguerite Elementary: 3 – 6 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 4

Hillcrest Elementary: 4 – 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

John Hay Elementary: no meet and greet scheduled

Lincoln Heights Elementary: 4 – 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

Manley Elementary: 5 – 7 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

Russellville Primary and Intermediate: 4:30 – 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 4 (both schools)

Union Heights Elementary: no meet and greet scheduled

West Elementary: 5 – 7 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

Whitesburg Elementary: information unavailable

Witt Elementary: 4 – 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

Middle schools:

East Ridge Middle School: 6th grade orientation, 3 – 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3

Lincoln Heights Middle School: 6th grade walk-thru, 5 – 6 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 4

Meadowview Middle School: 6th grade orientation bash, 5 p.m., Friday, Aug. 13

West View Middle School: 6th grade orientation, 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 3; meet and greet, 6 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 4

High schools:

Morristown West: no meet or greet or freshman orientation scheduled; an event may be planned for a later date.

Freshman orientation

Due to scheduling conflicts, Morristown-Hamblen High School West will not hold its traditional freshman orientation.

West High School officials made a statement on social media Thursday night that the lack of orientation is not due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The decision to skip this event is NOT related to the pandemic,” the statement said. “It is merely a scheduling conflict and we have to try and do something different this year.”

Officials said some teachers were unable to attend the event predated the current COVID surge.

“We will work hard the first several days of the semester to help our kids acclimate to our school,” the statement said.