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99 students from Hooksett to attend Pinkerton as freshmen for new school year

DERRY — School officials said they anticipate a routine trip for 99 freshmen students from Hooksett to Pinkerton Academy Thursday for the first day of classes.

The students chose to attend Pinkerton for the 2014-15 school year, marking the first time so many Hooksett students will be enrolled at the high school.

Superintendent Phil Littlefield said he expects the trip to be routine.

“The fact that it is seamless is what we strive for,” he said.

In total, there are 165 Hooksett students who were eighth graders last year who will be incoming freshman this year at Pinkerton or other area high schools. In addition to Pinkerton, students were able to choose from other surrounding schools that included Manchester, Bow and Londonderry, according to officials.

At Pinkerton, administrators didn’t have to make too many changes to accommodate the new students, said Chip Underhill, executive director of public relations and external affairs.

“We have the room, we have the facilities, our systems are designed for this size of student body,” Underhill said.

But the addition of nearly 100 students did mean Pinkerton had to hire four more teachers to keep class sizes at a reasonable level, Underhill said. He said 100 is the “magic number” at which more teachers need to be hired in the core subjects of math, English, science and social studies.

“This is routine; we are doing it because it’s in the best interest of the students,” Underhill said.

A little more than 800 freshmen are expected to attend Pinkerton during the upcoming school year, Underhill said. There will also be 60 transfer students that will be coming to Pinkerton from other high schools, he said. The students started high school at another high school before opting to transfer to the Derry school.

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