By: Christine Souders
Monday was the first day for the new Abingdon-Avon, IL School District, and the first time high school and middle school students from both towns will be sharing the same school pride of the black, yellow, and green.
Students at the newly merged Abingdon–Avon High School and Middle Schools are now the ATown Tornadoes.
"We made it from Commandos to the ATown Tornadoes, which is a big change, a surprising change," said Dane Brown, an Abingdon Senior.
Last November, school leaders voted to consolidate the two districts as a cost saving measure, and to improve academics for the students.
High school students from both Abingdon and Avon are attending the high school in Abingdon, and about a 10 minute bus drive from Abingdon, all middle school students are attending the former high school and middle school building in Avon.
"I'm used to just having one hallway, and now there's like 4, but it's still hard to get around, it's been a lot," said Nada Stonebraker, who admits it's a bit of a shocker to be spending her senior year at a different building
"It's bigger than I'm used to. I'm used to having an average of 5 kids in each class, and so it's a little weird to see all these people, but I think it's a good transition."
And it's the same for a former Avon teacher, who now has a new classroom inside the Abingdon high school.
"I had less students, and so discipline wasn't really an issue. I knew the kids really well, and here it's just going to be getting to know a lot of new faces," said Meredith Gravina.
For many, the first day of school is a brand new beginning.
"Sports of course, and hanging out with the new people," said Brown.
"We are going to be known as the first graduating class from Abingdon–Avon high school,"said Stonebracker.
The HS principal said they plan to change the red paint color on the bleachers to black as soon as they can.