The new school year begins Monday, and top administrators of Chapel Hill-Carrboro and Orange County Schools say they’re excited about new initiatives.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Superintendent Dr.Tom Forcella spoke to WCHL about a convocation with school staff that was held on Thursday.

“We spoke to all staff about our direction for this year,” he said. “People are very excited. We’re in the second year of our long-range plan. We have some new initiatives that I think will make a big difference in the school system.”

There are no new schools opening this year, and Forcella said that does make things a little easier.

Last year, Northside Elementary opened for the first time, as well as the Frank Porter Graham Dual Language Magnet School in the district.

“It was a little bit more that we had on our plate last year,” he said.

Forcella also reminds local drivers to be start being mindful again about kids waiting for buses in the morning, and getting dropped off in the afternoon.

“I just urge everyone to be careful and to really watch themselves as they’re traveling on the road,” he said.

Interim Deputy Superintendent of Orange County Schools Dr. Pam Jones sent this message to WCHL on Friday:

“There will be excitement and anticipation in the air on Monday morning as traditional classrooms reopen for over 7,500 Orange County students,” she wrote. “As always student safety will be of utmost concern. We ask each driver to honor our students and teachers as they embark on the new year by being particularly watchful when approaching a yellow bus and driving through school zones.”