School in the Rose City is officially in session and teachers say they're rising to the challenge of having to prepare during a shorter summer break.
On the first day of school the students show up raring to go. Many children enjoyed a whirlwind tax-free shopping weekend for their new supplies and gear, but teachers had much less time to get ready.
Kathy Swearingen, a Garrison-Pilcher second grade teacher, says, "It used to be that we worked nine months, it seemed like we had June, July and August, but we no longer have August! We start back to school very early."
Rose City teachers say their summer vacation may have been shorter than other area districts, but they say they've looked forward to coming back to school and all the positive changes made over the break.
Anita Ashworth, a third grade teacher at Harper Elementary, adds, "Harper Elementary has undergone major renovations this summer. All the teachers have worked overtime and we've transformed our rooms into special places of learning."
Katie Johnson, a Garrison-Pilcher second grader, says, "We're writing stuff in our book, like it says, we need to finish a story and stuff."
Renovations are ongoing at some schools. At others, work has been finished just in the nick of time, but despite the hurried feeling of their summer, students and staff say they're looking forward to a good year.
Most districts in Florida and some in Georgia do not start up until next week. Check with your area district for more information.