The first day of school can be overwhelming for students, especially if you are a freshman, first grader or kindergartner. There are a lot of unknowns.

Freshman are wondering if initiations are true, kindergartners are crying for their mommies and first graders are trying to figure out how long "all day" is.

The first day of school is here. Twin Falls and Hansen schools start today (Aug. 25), while Filer, Buhl, Jerome, and Kimberly start after Labor Day (Sep. 2). Here are a few things that you need to know.

Kids will figure it out, but if you are anything like me, you can use all the help you can get. Here is a list of the most important things to know about school:

  • School Zones - Don't Speed. Speeding in a school zone is extremely dangerous, against the law and can cost you up to $235.00.  Some zones are time sensitive and others are indicated by a flashing light.  The rules are clearly spelled out on the signs so be sure to keep an eye on them.
  • Pick-Up Zones - Dropping your child off in the wrong area can mess the bus system up and cause frustration from other parents as well as put your child and others in danger. If necessary park...get out of your car and walk your child to the door. It may be a pain but it is for the safety of your child.
  • Pick-Up Times - A lot of schools do early release one day a week. Check with your school to make sure the schedule hasn't changed from the prior year and be aware that little kids are usually released earlier than older children to help eliminate a busy parking lot during pick up times. Ask your child's teacher what time she plans on walking out her class each day.
  • After School Programs - If your child is signed up for an after school program it isn't always safe to assume that they will be escorted to this program. Make sure they have someone to point them in the right direction, especially the first few days.
  • Food Allergies - If your child has allergies giving the school a letter is always a good start, but make sure your child's teacher is aware for Birthday parties and other snack items that enter the schools classroom. You will also want to hand deliver a letter to the head lunch lady, as they can accommodate your child if you are unable to pack a lunch for your child.

As we enter the school year, I will be holding my breath from 8:00am to 3:00pm Monday thru Friday for at the least the first week. It is bittersweet to see our babies growing up so quickly.

Be careful out there, and good luck to all of our students.