Every Year There is A New First Day of School


A blog by Ms. Julia V. Fanara P’01, P’03, P’05, Head of School

When I was a young girl, summer always went through August and we didn’t return to school until the day after Labor Day. That was also the start of all the new TV shows. It was always miserably hot and there was no air conditioning in classrooms. We would pray for the temperature to climb above 103 because that meant we could go home early. We still had to go to school in the morning, but they gave us early release at around noon. One could always count on a few of those in September.

School today is obviously very different. We started on August 18– a full two weeks before the Labor Day weekend. There are no new shows to be excited about yet on TV. The weather is still the same but there are no “early release” days due to unbearable heat because all the rooms are air conditioned.

The one thing that hasn’t changed are the girls. Some were thrilled to be back, to see their friends, and break the monotony of the long dog days of summer. Others were just getting into the swing of traveling and experiencing new summer adventures when school crept up too quickly. The same goes for the teachers. Some of us were here a week before we needed to be, getting rooms ready, preparing for new students with anxious and excited enthusiasm. While some of us were walking around in a daze saying, “Is it really time for in-service? Summer can’t be over?” We all go through it in one way or another. But it always happen; every year there is a First Day of School. 

Our first days have come and gone and now we are well into our school year. Let’s not forget to share our summer fun with our friends and teachers. Share what you learned and how it changed you! I learned that I love zip-lining! The faster, the better! I also learned that almost every summer I end up with a stress fracture – that will require further investigation. Finally, I learned about my DNA and my husband’s through Ancestry.com. It is amazing and a little frightening how much they can learn about your background from a little spit in a test tube.

I am looking forward to a year full of hope, change, and fun! Let’s experience that together. Welcome to 2017-18 at Alverno Heights Academy– Her-Story Starts Here! 



Ms. Julia V. Fanara P’01, ’03, & ’05 is the Head of School and Chair of the English Department at Alverno Heights Academy. This is her 27th year at Alverno Heights Academy and she has previously served as a member of the English and Visual and Performing Arts Departments, Director of Activities, Dean of Students, and Assistant Head of School. Ms. Fanara became the Head of School in June 2014. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Loyola Marymount University, a Master of Education degree in Inclusion from Loyola Marymount University, a Master of Education degree in Secondary School Administration from the University of San Francisco, and is currently working on her Ed.D. from Walden University. Her three daughters, Gina ’01, Alexandra ’03, and Jacquelyn ’05, all graduated from Alverno.


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