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Superintendent with district since kindergarten has 1st day of school picture tradition with grandson

One superintendent in Muskegon County has started a tradition of taking a first day picture with his 8-year-old grandson, Quintyn.

MUSKEGON COUNTY, Mich. — 13 ON YOUR SIDE has been following the back-to-school rush and showing off some fun first day of school pictures.

One superintendent in Muskegon County has started a tradition of taking a first day of school picture with his 8-year-old grandson, Quintyn.

Orchard View Schools superintendent Jim Nielsen attended Orchard View Schools for his entire school career and then started working for the district 37 years ago. He originally started out as a kindergarten teacher, and eventually moved into administration. He’s now served as superintendent for the last nine years.

Quintyn just started his third grade year at Cardinal Elementary. He talked about how his grandpa helps him with those first day of school jitters.

“Sometimes, when I come to school I don’t see a lot of people that I know. So, I get nervous. Before I go to school, I see him and he’s a person that I know. So, it just makes me feel better,” said Quintyn.

“Quintyn is not my only grandchild. I have several grandkids and they’re in other districts around the county, but Quintyn is the one that’s here at Orchard View and I absolutely love being able to start the year off with him, every year. The last four years doing our first day of school picture together,” said Nielsen.

Superintendent Nielsen says his family has been a part of this community his whole life. It’s a community he says is special for many reasons.

“My world is really small. I tell people that all the time. I grew up here and this is the only place I’ve ever been. So, my world is small. I’ve never lived further than four miles from the house I grew up in. So, I’ve lived in this community my whole life. I still live here and I’ll probably live here as long as I’m around,” said Nielsen as he shared his immense pride in his community.

He added that, “This community’s important to me. This district’s important to me. I’m really, really proud of our district. We’re full of fantastic students. I’m really proud of the diversity in our school district. That’s something that we celebrate and I encourage that we celebrate it. As you can see, there’s diversity right here as we sit here in front of you and we’re proud of that as a family, too.”

Nielsen’s sister was also a student and teacher in the district. Plus, all three of Nielsen’s children, including Quintyn’s mom, attended Orchard View Schools.

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