Some arrived in brightly colored uniforms, others in street clothes without book bags.
After weeks of idle time, sleeping in tents or damaged homes, thousands of eager students returned to school Monday as Haitian authorities officially resumed the start of classes in this quake-battered capital.
"Everything's different," said Conrad Martin, 14. "All my study habits are different."
Martin awoke at 5:30 a.m., two hours earlier than usual to get to Collège Catts Pressoir, a private school in the middle-class neighborhood of Bourdon. His home in Canape Vert was destroyed, and he and his parents now live in cramped quarters with his older sister.
The Haitian government has made relaunching schools one of its top priorities, but has struggled to do so since the Jan. 12, 7.0-magnitude earthquake flattened hundreds of classrooms in Port-au-Prince and other cities.
On Monday, neither government nor international officials could say how many classrooms had opened as planned with the support of humanitarian groups. But the day marked the start of a gradual -- and uphill -- process that officials hope will restore a sense of normalcy.
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