EL MONTE – El Monte Union High School District welcomed more than 8,000 students back to campuses for the first day of school on Aug. 17, when they were greeted by peers, cheer teams, marching bands, campus leaders, mascots and school staff who helped create an inviting atmosphere and excite students for the 2022-23 school year.

Each El Monte Union campus held its own special celebration, with brightly decorated balloons and posters, as new and returning students connected over summer happenings and compared schedules for their first period classes.

Arroyo High School and South El Monte High School (SEMHS) introduced incoming freshmen to their new campuses with exciting orientations filled with opportunities to learn more about available classes and clubs and interacted in engaging icebreakers and activities, during Welcome Back Week held Aug. 8-12.

At Fernando R. Ledesma, students prepared for the new school year by meeting with counselors to discuss and prepare their class schedules during a registration event on Aug. 17.

El Monte High School kicked off its first day with the cheer team, color guard and marching band performing as their peers walked in. At Rosemead High School, music played from a loud speaker while spirit leaders and panther mascots lined up at the front entrance to welcome students back. Superintendent Dr. Edward Zuniga was present to give students a fist bump and a high five, while sharing encouraging words to inspire them for the year ahead.

“The first day of school is always filled with excitement, and it is an honor to personally greet our scholars as they embark on a new year of discovery and challenges,” Zuniga said. “From new freshmen getting their first glimpse of high school life, to seniors gearing up for their final year, the spirit and camaraderie epitomizes the entire El Monte Union community. On behalf of our faculty, staff and administrators, we are ready to make this a year to remember.”

Mountain View High School (MVHS) students were celebrated with a rainbow of purple and gold balloons alongside a poster in the middle of the quad that listed the name of every Mountain View Viking student and staff member. Associated Student Body (ASB) leaders and Link Crew members also assisted new students in finding their classrooms.

Mountain View High senior and ASB President Jose Ibarra served as DJ, providing welcome back music in front of a poster celebrating the Class of 2023 that read “Last First Day of School.” Ibarra said he is eager to get the new school year going, and hopes to inspire his classmates to reach new academic heights.

“I’m a people person, I like working with others. I feel very optimistic for the new school semesters,” Ibarra said. “Our number one goal is to make people feel safe and provide an environment where they can study and learn. Hopefully we can get beyond COVID and have a great year.”

This school year, the District is continuing its efforts to protect the health and safety of students and staff by ensuring access to testing and the COVID-19 vaccine. In partnership with the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, vaccine clinics will be provided at each of the upcoming back to school night events.

El Monte Union has also launched EMUHSD GoPass, which offers students a GoPass TAP card for unlimited free rides on Metro bus and rail when taking trips to school, after school and on weekends through June 30, 2023.


EMUHSD_FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL_1: Rosemead High School spirit leaders cheer on new and returning students as they make their way to the front entrance for the first day of school on Aug. 17.

EMUHSD_FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL_2: Rosemead High School’s spirit leaders ignite school pride as they gather to welcome students to campus for the first day back at school on Aug. 17.

EMUHSD_FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL_3: Members of Mountain View High School’s color guard, band and drill team gather in excitement to celebrate the first day of school on Aug. 17.

EMUHSD_FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL_4: Mountain View High School senior and Associated Student Body President, Jose Ibarra, welcomes students back onto campus for the first day of school on Aug. 17.