First day of school in Gwinnett, Cobb, Atlanta - CBS46 News

First day of school in Gwinnett, Cobb, Atlanta

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Hundreds of thousands of metro Atlanta school children said goodbye to summer Wednesday and hello to old friends and new teachers.

It's the first day of the new school year for public school students in Gwinnett County, Cobb County and the city of Atlanta.

Nelshana Deener told CBS Atlanta News that she didn't need an alarm clock. Her sons - both students at Beaver Ridge Elementary School in Norcross - woke her up.

"'Mom, we've got to get up! We've got to go to school! It's time! I'm ready!'" shouted her boys. "So I guess they're ready," she said with a laugh.

"We changed about three outfits before we actually came out, so this is just going to have to do today," said Jamika Thornton. Her daughter Madison ended up wearing a hot pink shirt to match her Hello Kitty backpack.

Several other metro Atlanta school districts start the new school year Wednesday as well, including Bremen and Cartersville city schools and the school districts of Barrow, Bartow, Clarke, Douglas, Fannin, Heard, Oconee and Pickens counties.

Authorities remind drivers to be careful on the roadways and remember to stop for school buses as they are picking up or dropping off students.

In July, Gwinnett County's school board voted to place stop arm cameras on school buses. When the school bus stop arm is activated, the new system detects vehicles passing illegally. The system photographs the violation, including capturing the vehicle's license plate. Initially, 300 school buses will have the cameras, said school district officials.

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