The 2016-17 school year begins this week for all Arkansas City students.

Classes for USD 470 first- through 12th-graders begin Aug. 18. Pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students will begin Aug. 25.

Classes at Cowley College begin Aug. 16. Downtown traffic might be a bit heavier this week as students continue to arrive for the beginning of the academic year.

Sacred Heart Catholic School begins classes Aug. 18.

Arkansas City Christian Academy classes for grades 1-12 will begin Aug. 16, followed by K3-K5 on Aug. 17.

Backpack night events will be on the following nights:

  • Adams Elementary School — 5:30 to 7 p.m. Aug. 15;
  • C-4 Elementary School — 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Aug. 16;
  • Frances Willard Elementary School — 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Aug. 16;
  • IXL Elementary School — 4:30 to 6 p.m. Aug. 15;
  • Jefferson Elementary School — 5 to 6:30 p.m. Aug. 16;
  • Roosevelt Elementary School — 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Aug. 15.