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The long walk for the first day of school
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LATHROP – Isaiah Robles woke up shortly before 6 a.m. Monday in order to make the long walk to school.

 The Lathrop High freshman, from his home located near Woodfield Park, set out afoot to his new surroundings, taking the recently completed extension road just west of the Interstate 5.

 “It wasn’t too bad,” Robles said. “But it was kind of tiring (walking to school).”

 Principal David Chamberlain noted that most of the estimated 750 students arrived to school on this first day via car, bike or skateboard.
 “Last year, we had maybe three or four bikes on the rack. But this morning I noticed a couple of dozen,” he said.

 Chamberlain was also surprised to see at least one bus roll in, particularly since not one of the six from last year were assigned to Lathrop High because of the estimated $32 million budget shortfall.

 Freshmen, sophomores and juniors at the Manteca Unified campus – it won’t be until next year that LHS gets its first senior class – were within the newly established 2.5 miles “no bus zone” for high schoolers as adopted several months ago by the school board.

 Chamberlain received some calls on the lack of buses but noted that most have adapted to the changes.

 Shortly before the 7:30 first bell, vehicles could be seen traveling in single file along the Lathrop Road extension at the drop off point directly in front of the campus, with at least one motorcycle officer on duty.

“This would have been difficult to do if we were still using Dos Reis Road,” said Chamberlain.

 The first day of school consisted of students trying to iron out some of the wrinkles after picking up their schedules from the alpha room.

 “They had a rough draft (of their schedule),” said Cristy Rickets, assistant principal.

Added Chamberlain: “Overall, I was pretty pleased with our first day back.”