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Back to Communications Home

New Albany High pool makes a big splash

ALBANY, N.Y. (May 10, 2017) -- Albany High School celebrated the long-awaited completion of its new pool May 10, punctuated by a joyous ceremonial first dive by members of the school’s swimming teams.

 

"It is a great day to be a Falcon!” said Interim Superintendent Kimberly Young Wilkins, Ed.D., “Our celebration this morning represents yet another step forward for Albany High School, for our school district and for our entire community.” Click here to read Dr. Wilkins full remarks.

 

Closed since a portion of the exterior wall collapsed during a period of extreme cold in March 2015, the pool officially will return to service when the girls’ swimming team begins preseason practice in mid-August. The boys’ team will return home officially when the winter sports season begins in November.

 

The City School District of Albany also will reinstate the learn-to-swim program for second-graders when the 2017-18 school year begins.

 

“I can still remember the thud my heart made back in March 2015 when I learned that a large section of the pool wall had collapsed here at Albany High,” said Board of Education President Sue Adler. “It was hard in that moment to envision a space like this, or to imagine a day like this.

 

“But here we are, with so much to be thankful for and to celebrate, and with so much to look forward to.”

 

Click here to read Adler's full remarks.

 

The pool renovations were completed thanks to a tax-free referendum voters approved in May 2015. The $4 million pool project was part of a $14 million package of renovations at 14 buildings district-wide, all completed with no additional impact on taxes.

 

Construction on the pool building began last October.

 

The ribbon-cutting ceremony marked an important day for the school and district “because we know the completion of our pool represents not just the end of a long-awaited facilities project, or the beginning of a new era for our student-athletes,” Dr. Wilkins said.

 

“This event also represents our continued progress here at Albany High School and throughout the City School District of Albany. It represents the fulfillment of another important piece of our vision for the future.”

 

Along with about 30 Albany High student-athletes and several parents, the gathering for the ribbon-cutting ceremony also included board members Adler, Vice President Anne Savage and Sridar Chittur, Ph.D., Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Assemblymember Pat Fahy (also an Albany High parent!), Albany Common Council member Daniel Herring and Albany County legislators Frank Commisso Sr. and Wanda Willingham.

 

Albany High Acting Principal Dale Getto summed up the morning perfectly in her opening comments at the start of the event: "It's a great day to be a Falcon!" she said.

 

Following the ceremonial ribbon-cutting (pictured below), members of the Albany High swim teams officially opened the pool with a ceremonial first dive (pictured at right).

 

The district now is looking ahead to the start of construction on the major Albany High rebuilding project. That work will begin with the groundbreaking for a new academic wing in the spring of 2018. That new building is expected to open for students at the start of the 2019-20 school year.

 

Albany High senior Sedric Tello, a member of the boys’ swimming team, said the completion of the pool project “goes to show how much the Albany city school district can accomplish when it comes together, and what happens when everybody prioritizes what’s best for our students and our athletes.

 

“Because when things like this happen, it proves that there’s no limit to what we can accomplish.”

 

To view a video documenting the renovations and ribbon-cutting, click here. (A Facebook account is not necessary to view this content. A window may display the text "To see more from Albany City Schools on Facebook, log in or create an account," but this can be dismissed by clicking "not now.")

 

The mission of the City School District of Albany is to educate and prepare all students for college and career, citizenship and life, in partnership with our diverse community. The district serves nearly 9,700 students in 17 elementary, middle and high schools. In addition to neighborhood schools, the district includes several magnet schools and programs, as well as other innovative academic opportunities for students, including four themed academies at Albany High School.

         
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