Tomorrow is the First Day of School for Many Evacuee Students

Hundreds of Katrina families are enrolling their children in school today. When all is said and done, the Houston Independent School District expects anywhere from 5,000-6,000 new students. The first day of school is tomorrow.

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The eternal optimism of children shines through nine year old Terryanna Durel. The Durel family spent several days in their home's attic before their father, Anthony Durel was able to break through in the roof. They were then rescued by a boat. Durel is hoping school will get his children's minds off of what they've been through.

Durel will also then be able to go and look for a job. Right now, he says it looks like they'll be staying in Houston. It may take a little longer to adjust for the older kids like 16 year old Christopher Mitchell. His father, Raymond, is much more confident.

The Houston Independent School District is re-opening Douglas and Ryan Elementery schools that had been closed because of declining enrollment. Those two schools will hold more than 13-hundred. Officials are identifying openings in the other 305 schools across the district. HISD has been doing a lot of hiring ... including teachers from the New Orleans area who are among the evacuees. Helen Franklan taught in Jefferson Parish for the past 23 years.

A number of standard school requirements are being waived considering how they found themselves in the bayou city. Officials point out that school had already started in Louisana, so most of the children had received vaccinations that are similar to Houston's requirements. Buses will line up outside the Reliant Center and the George R Brown Convention center tomorrow morning to take the children to their new schools.

Bio photo of Capella Tucker

Capella Tucker

Director of Content

Capella Tucker joined KUHF in the spring of 1994 as a part-time reporter. She quickly gained a full-time position when she took over production duties for

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