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Avoid rush for registration
Sooner the better, school leaders say
1 School WEB
Debbie Holland looks at a form with new students Brianna and Patrick Vanderhoof, who will both attend Midway Elementary School. Their father, Roland, brought them to the Almon C. Hill Educational Center for registration this week. - photo by Jim Dean

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It might feel like summer just started, but in just a few weeks, it’ll be over for more than 37,000 Forsyth County students.

The first day of school, Aug. 11, is quickly approaching. Few feel the rush like Registration Specialist Debbie Holland and her team of four assistants.

According to Holland, the registration office at the Almon C. Hill Educational Center averages about 80 appointments daily. That doesn’t include all the walk-ins who face wait times of as long as three hours.

“Parents need to get into registration as soon as possible because we get that log of people that come in the week before and a couple of days before school and they’ll have to wait even longer,” said Holland.

Those who make an appointment are seen prior to walk-ins, Holland said. She also points parents to fill out pre-registration information online to save time at the office, though parents would still need to come in with identification and requested documents.

Only new students, including transfers, incoming kindergarteners and previously withdrawn students need to be registered. Students who were registered or were in the system last year do not need to be registered again.

Holland said only about 89 percent of new students have registered by the first day of school, with the rest just showing up.

“They’ll go to the school first and then find out they have to come here,” Holland said. “Usually, they can leave us and go straight to school and they will be in classes that day.”

The process typically takes less than 30 minutes, but it’s not always that easy, Holland said. Often parents will have to go home because they forgot necessary information. The most frequently left behind items are proof of residency and health immunizations.

“For people moving from another state, they have to transfer the child’s immunizations,” she said. “And that means a trip to the health department.”