It could almost have been Christmas at West Balcatta Primary, the children were so eager to start their first day of school yesterday.

There were no tears in sight as students hung up their bags outside their classrooms and compared new lunch boxes.

Principal Julian Vinciullo said all students loved the first day of the school year.

"Even the big kids are all excited, so it's just a great feeling," he said.

For the Palasin family, yesterday marked the first time all three siblings attended school together.

Four-year-old Christian had his first day of kindergarten, Amia, 5, started Year 1 and Liliana, 7, went into Year 3.

Their mother Lisa said the children had packed their bags ready for school several days ago.

All three were excited, though Amia was slightly anxious.

"Christian is the last one going, so I was a bit emotional," Mrs Palasin said. "I thought I'd be happy having all three go, but I was a bit sad." Education Minister Peter Collier said he was pleased that all teaching vacancies had been filled for the start of school, so all classes would have a teacher.

Mr Collier said most students and staff would start the year in comfort because the installation of air-conditioning was six months ahead of schedule.

"We live in a State where week-long heatwaves during the summer months are not uncommon, so it's important students and staff have cool and fresh classrooms to learn and work," he said.

The West Australian

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