October 25, 2013
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Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff
Students walked in front of a makeshift memorial for slain Danvers High math teacher Colleen Ritzer on the first day of classes after her body was discovered.
Philip Chism, a 14-year-old student, has been charged with the teacher's slaying.
Troy Fleming, a junior who had a class with Ritzer last year, left flowers at the memorial.
Students leaving the campus said their day began with a meeting in which staff reminded them that grief counselors were on hand to help them deal with the emotional impact.
The day passed slowly for Emily Nestor, a freshman. "It was . . . kind of sad. No one really knew what to do."
The memorial includes handwritten notes, a pink Red Sox teddy bear, and a pumpkin carved with the mathematical symbol pi.
Students said most of their class time was devoted to reviewing lessons already taught or to conversations about what happened.
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