RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- It's a new school year for thousands of students, and for some Wake County students it's a new school year in a brand new school building.
Principal Anne Marie Adkins is welcoming students to their first day ever at Herbert Akins Road Middle School.
"It's awesome everybody's been so nice; he went to elementary school right there, so it's been a good transition," parent Laura Miller said.
As far as safety goes, parents are giving gold stars.
"I see the police presence here when we pulled up that made me feel good. It's concerning, but you know I feel like they got it under control," parent Michael Lunsford said.
We got a look inside at the new facility and how students will learn.
"We really want to build skills for those students those soft skills of being able to communicate well with one another build collaborative team atmosphere and really take those skills into the next level of their life," Principal Adkins said.
Which means a state-of-the-art theatre, cafeteria and gymnasium, but that's not all.
A new year and new school means new technology like interactive promethium boards and colorful collaborative spaces.
"We're able to be in the collaborative space right outside the classroom. In the classroom, teachers will be able to work with small groups and we can just build that collaborative community," Adkins explained.
The school with 850 students and 85 faculty members is just one of the new schools in the county. But region superintendent Clinton Robinson says they are proud of the growth.
"As the population increase we want to make sure that we have facilities, such as this, so our students have a place to come and learn then I think this is a great opportunity for them," said Robinson.
The 2022-23 school year officially kicked off Thursday with 36 multi-track year-round schools open to nearly 31,000 students and 250 buses in Wake County. Traditional calendar students will return to class on August 29.