LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - Nearly 100,000 JCPS students returned to the classrooms Wednesday. 

At Coleridge Taylor Elementary, Oliver Hinson and his mom, Erin, were excited about the first day of school.

"I'm looking forward to being a first grader, I really like first grade!" Oliver said. 

"We actually woke up at the crack of dawn so that we could be on time for the first day," said Erin.

Across the street at Central High School, students showed off their new outfits and met up with old friends-- with adrenaline pumping and maybe even some nerves kicking in. Senior, Michael Romaine says he can't wait to start the year and is "just excited for the last first day of school. Ready to go ahead and get through my senior year and head off to college."

Central's new principal, Raymond Green is proud to launch Kentucky's first Montessori program in a public high school.

And for acting JCPS Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio, it's straight to work as he visits 8 schools on the first day. He replaced longtime superintendent Dr. Donna Hargens, who resigned earlier this year.

We caught up with Pollio at Central High School not long before classes started. 

"I'm excited," Pollio said. "It's my 21st first day of school. My first one was a little bit down the road here at Shawnee High School back in 1997. There's always an excitement to doing this."

Pollio says he'll miss "actually being the principal and getting kids into classes and answering all those questions as a principal does, but getting to eight schools and seeing the culture and climate in eight different schools is exciting too. So I'm excited about the day."

He says he believes the biggest challenge this year is making sure the district's 155 schools operate with a single purpose and focus.

"That requires such a coordinated effort with a great team around me, making sure we have a lot of coherence and that we're getting into schools," Pollio said. "A big challenge to do that, but we're confident it's going to happen."

Pollio says the upcoming school year can be as great as students and parents want to make it. He has this advice for incoming students "I would say to the students out there: make sure that you get involved in school. Find something that's going to increase that belonging such as getting involved in some of the programs.... The more a student does that, the more likely it is that they're going to be successful." 

More than 900 JCPS buses travel a total of 94,096 miles a day, transporting 70,000 students to and from school, 175 days a year. Parents with questions about transportation can call (502) 485-RIDE (7433).

The transportation hotline will be open from 6 a.m. until the buses finish their afternoon routes. Officials are urging parents to be patient on the first few days of school. 

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