Students from boarding schools have started returning to school with optimism that the new academic year will be smooth as the Covid-19 continues to ease. Students from Kigali City started boarded their buses early morning at the Kigali Stadium in Nyamirambo, with departure starting at exactly 8 am. This academic year, the first to begin in October following changes by the Ministry of Education will start on Monday, October 11. Over the past year, students, teachers and parents alike endured sustained disruptions of Covid-19 as schools remained closed for the better part of the academic year in order to control the spread of the virus. However, with increased vaccination and more awareness about the virus, they are optimistic about a smooth year ahead. Ingrid Shami, a senior three student at Groupe Scolaire St. François Gisagara said she was glad to return to school and ready to start her studies. We had enough holidays, I had time to revise materials from the previous years since it will help me in this coming year as I will sit for my ordinary level national examination, she said Jean-Pierre Cyubahiro, a senior two student at Christ Roi Nyanza said this new academic year is an opportunity for him to improve his grades. He is also keen on being exemplary in observing Covid-19 guidelines. Denyse Nishimwe, a student from Rwabuye TVET School in Huye district, said she will start the academic year with her parents advice in mind. The young learner has been advised to study hard and make good friends, adding that with that in mind she is sure to have a successful academic year. Maria Uwamahoro, a teacher and mother of two students said she was optimistic about the upcoming academic year The past years have not been easy for us as a teacher, parent and of course our children due to the pandemic. But with the governments efforts in curbing the pandemic we are hopeful of a smooth-running academic year, she said. Christophe Manirafasha, a father who was escorting his children said: My advice to not only my children but all other students is to study hard and build a good future for themselves and the country.” The transportation exercise will continue until Monday. Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) has deployed more than 100 buses to transport the students. The first batch of students who started to leave on Friday are going to their schools in the City of Kigali and the districts of Nyanza, Huye, Gisagara, Musanze, Burera, Rusizi, Nyamasheke, Rwamagana and Kayonza. On Saturday they will be followed by students going to schools in Nyaruguru, Nyamagabe, Gakenke, Karongi, Rutsiro, Gatsibo, and Nyagatare, and Sunday students will go to their respective schools in Ruhango, Gicumbi, Ngororero, Nyabihu, Kirehe and Ngoma. The last group of boarding students will leave on Monday going to Kamonyi, Muhanga, Rulindo, Rubavu, and Bugesera. However, students going to S.1 and S.4 students who recently got the results of their national examinations will start on October 18.