LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) – It’s back to school Tuesday for the nation’s second- largest school district, as doors open at Los Angeles Unified campuses and its more than 600,000 students return to class.

For the first time in three decades, all LAUSD schools are starting at the same time, with no more year-round schedules.

With classes back in session, school buses will be back on Southland streets along with a host of parents delivering their children to campus, meaning a likely increase in some morning and mid-afternoon traffic congestion.

LAUSD administrators and school board members will be visiting various campuses throughout the day, with a celebratory theme marking the opening of the last of 131 campuses that were built to “increase access to neighborhood schools and eliminate the need for year-round calendars.”

The beginning of the school year also marks another renewal of an annual district goal — increasing the graduation rate. Earlier this month LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King unveiled her ambitious goal of a 100 percent graduation rate.

LAUSD’s graduation rate climbed to 77 percent for the class of 2017, the fifth straight year it has increased.

King says district officials are sensitive to the fears immigrant families may have.

“Some of our kids have been fearful about coming to school, so we are offering programs for our immigrant families, to kids who have been marginalized, to say, ‘We are a safe place, we are here to support you,'” King said.

King said the district is committed to engaging students with tools such as dual-language pilots in 10 early education programs, research-themed magnet schools, more science and technology offerings and greater access to Advanced Placement classes.

King will be among the LAUSD officials making the rounds of campuses on the first day of school, including Maywood Center for Enriched Studies, Griffith STEAM Magnet Middle School, Millikan Middle School and Performing Arts Magnet and Boys Academic Leadership Academy.

(©2017 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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