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Albany High School graduates wait in line to receive
their diplomas during the school's graduation ceremony at
the University of Albany's SEFCU Arena on June 28. In
all, 430 students graduated; members of the Class of 2009
will attend more than 115 colleges and universities in
the fall. (MORE)
Students file into the auditorium of Philip Livingston
Magnet Academy (l) ahead of the graduation ceremony on
June 25. At right, Albany County District Attorney David
Soares gives a speech during the ceremony. The graduation
marked an end of an era in Albany public schools, as the
school, which opened in 1932, will be discontinued due
to declining enrollment. (MORE)
Superintendent Eva Joseph, Ed.D., speaks at the
Kate Hettesheimer (AHS '99) performs in "Letters from
Seal a Smile Program at Delaware Community School
a Window in the Sky: A Tribute to Astrid Lindgren and
on June 12. The program, which was extended this
Pippi Longstocking" at Albany School of Humanities (ASH)
year by the legislature, provides oral health care to
on June 4.
uninsured students throughout the City School District
The first annual Father-Son Barbecue at Albany
Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and Tech-
School of Humanities (ASH) on May 30 was a big
nology took an all-school field trip to Schodack
Island State Park on May 29 to celebrate Albany's
Quadricentennial. Students planted tulip bulbs
as just one of many fun activities during the day-
long event. Click here for more
Woodson (left), author of 29 books for Hackett Middle School students Brett Graves (L) and
children and young adults, visited New Scotland Herman Vasques (R) read over financial documents
Elementary School's fifth-graders May 27. Students during First Niagara's first annual state-wide Day of
from Albany School of Humanities (ASH) and Arbor Mentoring on May 21. The program, held at the bank's
Hill Elementary School also attended to hear Ms. regional offices in Albany, provided information about
Woodson's presentations. She also spent the after- financial literacy, workplace awareness and an inside
noon talking with teachers from the three schools and look at how banks operate for the 25 Hackett students
Harriet Gibbons High School about literacy and in- involved.
spiring young authors by guiding them to find their
Students from Gloria Romano's second grade class at
Students from Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science
Arbor Hill Elementary School show off their class
and Technology (TOAST) visit the control room of the
"Pennies for Pets" jug on May 28. As a school, Arbor
Media Services Office of the State Senate on May 27.
Hill collected over $700 in pennies during the month
While there, students were able to shadow different
of May. The money collected will be donated to the
members of the Media Services Office team to learn more
Mohawk Hudson Humane Society.
about their job responsibilities. In addition, students
produced a live news broadcast.
State Senator Neil D. Breslin (D-Albany) visits Thomas
Students participate in a bean bag race during Hackett
O'Brien Academy of Science and Technology (TOAST)
Middle School's No Referral Field Day on May 22.
on May 26 to film a Public Service Announcement
to promote summer reading. TOAST students, who will
begin a video production class next year with teacher Deb
Whipple, gained valuable knowledge and experience
during the shoot.
Firefighters and Emergency Medical Technicians rush Members of the Delaware Community School (D.C.S.)
to save the "victim" during the Mock D.W.I. presentation Chess Club pose for a picture after their last meeting on
at Albany High School on May 20. May 15. (MORE)
Albany High's Mackenzie Honikel lays down a bunt Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and Technology
during the team's 3-1 loss against Catholic Central (TOAST) students visit the CapitalNews9 headquarters
on May 15. on May 14 to learn about jobs in the television business.
(L-R) Back row: Sarah Bhatti, Hannah Sheehan, Faith
McCall, Alexus Wilson, and Ebony Wilson.
Front row: Corey Holloman, Jackson Leon, Janelly Durr,
Ky'ere Tillery, and Elijah Lownes.
Albany High School student Isiah Thomas gives blood
Albany High sophomore Kyle Thompson competes
during the school's last blood drive for the year on
the hurdles during the Falcons' victories over Troy
May 14. In total, the blood drive collected 218 units
Amsterdam on May 13. The wins improved the
of blood - enough to potentially save 243 lives!
team's record to 6-0 in the Big 10.
Albany High boys' 400-meter relay team broke
Daniel Mahoney, Albany resident and author/illustrator
28-year-old school record in the event at the Johns-
of The Saturday Escape, among other books, talks to
Invitational on May 9. The team won the race
Eagle Point Elementary School students on May 12
42.9 seconds, breaking the mark of 43.1 set in
as part of the school's Authors Week. (MORE)
Pictured (L-R) before a May 13 Big 10 meet at
Albany High are Jalon Scott, Kareem Morris, Corey
Harris and Fuad Jusic.
Giffen Memorial Elementary School students were
Giffen Memorial Elementary School students race to
"thrilled" to see a preview of the Times Union Center's
switch sides before the parachute falls during the
show "Walking with Dinosaurs" across the street from the
district-wide fourth grade field day, which was held at
state legislative offices on May 11. Albany High School on
May 8. SUNY Albany co-ed
Sigma Pi organized and funded the
with the help of area businesses. (MORE)
Flanked by his parents and surrounded by his team- Albany High's Pat Landers smacks a double
mates May 6, Albany High senior Michael Hughes base of the wall in centerfield during Albany
signs a national letter of intent to play baseball at 9-3 win over Catholic Central at Bleecker Stadium
Coastal Carolina University. A pitcher, Michael is the May
4. The Falcons improved to 8-1 in the Big 10
first Albany High student to receive a Division I base- with a two-game lead over LaSalle and CBA.
Albany High School student Robert Romero takes Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Alan Page
on social studies teacher Gregory Baker in a chess talked with students at Stephen and Harriet Myers
match during Albany High School's Faculty/Student Middle School on April 30 about the importance of
Chess Tournament on April 30. education. Justice Page, a member of the National
Football League and College Football halls of
fame, co-founded the
Page Education Foundation
with his wife Diane Sims Page in 1988 to encour-
age more youth of color in Minnesota to attend
Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School sixth Pre-kindergarten students at Pine Hills Elementary
graders Madeline Avalo and Mollie Kather plant one School practice their bird-watching skills during the
of fifty white pine trees at the school in honor of school's Earth Day celebration on April 24. (MORE)
Arbor Day on April 24. (MORE)
(L-R) Charles Decker, Oniyalese Surgick and Maksym International makeup artist
Thom Cammer visited
Kornyev, from Ms. Ellis' fourth-grade class at William S. Hackett Middle School on April 20 to
Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and Technology put on a makeup workshop and demonstration.
(TOAST), help plant a tree in honor of Earth Day and Here, he adds about 70 years to seventh-grader
and Arbor Day on April 23. (MORE) Vivian Munafo.
Twenty-six students from Harriet Gibbons High
School took a four-day school trip to Washington,
D.C., in April. They visited an array of museums and
historical sites, including the Smithsonian, the Lin-
coln and Vietnam memorials, The National Aquarium
in Baltimore, The Great Blacks in Wax Museum, Mor-
gan State University and Howard University. They
also toured the Capitol (pictured) and
the trip had an opportunity to talk with college stu-
dents and learn more about the training and educa-
tion needed for their future goals.
Pre-Registration Blast for Pre-K and Kindergarten
was a huge success March 28, welcoming more than
100 families on a sunny Saturday to provide
information about the City School District of Albany's full-day pro-
grams for 4- and 5-year-olds. The event was held at
Schuyler Achievement Academy and sponsored by
the Albany Public School Teachers Association and New
York State United Teachers. Pictured at left are
Blast attendees Rayna Sanchez, 5-year-old Leeonty
Washington and Alfonzo Washington. "This is the best
school event that I've ever been to," Ms. Sanchez
said. Pictured at right, Schuyler teacher Maggie Burns
helps children at one of several craft tables set up
for the event.
Delaware Community School student Chyim Bowen
Albany High School hosted a Career Fair in the Media
(sleeping bag, left) and his cousin, Taivun
Center on March 18. Representatives from numerous
enjoy Movie Night on March 20.
careers talked with students and answered ques-
tions. Among the professions represented were law
enforcement, health care, urban planning, fire de-
partment, attoreny, aviation, engineering and retail.
Albany firefighter Paul Lawton reads to a pre-K
New Scotland Elementary School fifth-grader Jiachi
class at Giffen Memorial Elementary School as Zhu-He presents his science fair project during the
part of Guest Readers week March 19. school's science fair March 18.
Board of Education member Mark Barth, Ph.D. (left)
Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and Technology
reads to students at Giffen Memorial Elementary (TOAST) sixth-grader Yolozia Jones Richardson
School on March 17 during the school's Guest presents her science project during the school's
Readers Week. More than 20 guest readers partici- science fair March 9.
pated, including Superintendent Eva C. Joseph,
Ed.D., board members Rose Brandon and Judy L
Doesschate, Albany County District Attorney David
Soares, members of the police and fire departments,
Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources and
Community Relations Linda Jackson-Chalmers and
Albany High School Principal Maxine Fantroy-Ford,
who will return to Giffen as principal next
Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School kicked off Members
of the New Scotland Elementary School
Healthy Steps program along with Albany School
basketball team pose for a picture before playing an
Humanities on March 9 with physical activity stations exhibition
game against Sheridan Preparatory
on March 8. The game was played at the
Times Union Center prior to the start of the men's
semifinal game of the MAAC Tournament . New
Scotland Elementary School won the contest by a
final score of
Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School students
Students from Abrookin Career and Technical Cen-
Assistant Principal Lesley Mitchell into a human
and Albany High School visited local video-
sundae on March 6 as a reward for their hard work
game development company
selling cookie dough for the school's PTA.
on March 3. The students toured the facility and
attended presentations that provided an opportu-
nity to ask questions about the world of work. They
also got to "play-test" some of the games Vicarious
Visions has developed over the years. The field trip
also provided the students a chance to experience
a dynamic, team-oriented company structure, and to
network and practice business communication
Award-winning children's book illustrator Gerald
Pinkney (left) and his wife, children's author Gloria Jean
Pinkney (right) visited New Scotland Elementary
School on Feb. 24 to talk about their work. Pictured with Mrs.
Pinkney are New Scotland Elementary students (L-R)
Dionna Davis, Karim Perez, Deion Williams, Jasmine
Romeo and Fiori Isayas.
State Assemblyman Jack McEneny speaks to
and staff at Abrookin Vocational Technical
High School teachers Feb. 13 about how
center attend the celebratory ice cream social following
unique city history includes many important
their school's January food drive.
(L-R) Ashley Cherry,
locations and people related to African
Deanna Johnson, Destiny Moultrie and Shavonna
Assembly McEneny urged teachers to make
their Black History Month lessons "local
Albany School of Humanities (ASH) third graders
Albany High School's girls varsity basketball team poses
Keinyla Griffin and Isabella Perez cooperate to dump
in pink for
"Coaches vs. Cancer" week on Feb. 6.
waste paper into a recycling bin at ASH. On that
particular day, 650 pounds of of paper were collected.
about ASH's recycling program.
New York State First Lady Michelle Paige Paterson
visited North Albany Academy (left) and Stephen and Har-
riet Myers Middle School (right) on Feb. 4 to
kick off her "Healthy
Steps to Albany" challenge. At North Albany,
her visit included an interview with the school's news
team for the following days Web cast. At Myers, Mrs.
Paterson met with members of the Student Government
before visiting two sixth-grade classrooms. Read
more about her visits and the "Health Steps to Albany"
initiative in our
District News section.
The Albany City School District's seven finalists for the
Honorable Judge Helena Roland-Heath visits Delaware
March 9 regional spelling bee at Proctor's Theatre in
Community School on Jan. 22 as part of the school's
Schenectady. (From left) Sean Hems (winner),
Shaquille Williams (runner-up), Daniel Seda, Emily
Patnaude, Tierra Watson, Kathleen Martinez, and
Jackson Leon. The spelling bee was held Jan. 27 at
Albany High School.
Albany Tulip Queen Sarah Volk and Court member
Pine Hills Elementary School mom Shanelle Whittle
Caitlin Spinelli donate books to Giffen Memorial
won the Holiday Toy Basket Raffle on Dec. 18. The raffle
Elementary School's fourth grade lending library on
raised $136 to support the PHES Special Education 12:1
classroom programs and activities, including field trips and
New Scotland Elementary School (formerly P.S. 19)
reopened at its familiar location at 369 New Scotland Ave.
following the holiday recess. The City School District of Albany
unveiled the spectacular renovation project at
a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the community on Jan. 6. At left,
Superintendent Eva C. Joseph (center), Board
of Education President Barbara Gaffuri (center left),
and New Scotland Elementary School Principal Gregory
Jones (center, right) did the
honors. At right, the New Scotland Elementary chorus performs at the
Following the ceremony, approximately 300 visitors
toured the school.
The first snowstorm of the season turned Academy
Students and staff at Schuyler Achievement
Park into a winter wonderland just in time for the
Academy celebrated a holiday tradition Dec. 19
holiday break Dec. 19.
with Caroling on the Stairs in the school's main foyer.
Former New York Giants defensive end George
Students from Arbor Hill Elementary School and
Martin visited the North Albany YMCA on Dec. 11
Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and Tech-
to talk with North Albany Academy students about
nology (TOAST) joined the Police Athletic League
hard work, dedication and teamwork -- or, as he
to help Santa hand out presents Dec. 11 at the
calls them, "the ingredients for success." Last
Center for Disability Services in Albany. Pictured
June, Martin completed a 3,003-mile walk across
(L-R) are Jose Mateo (TOAST), Chantel Polk (Arbor
the United States in support of the first responders
Hill Elementary), Jordan Hoffler (TOAST) and Elen-
who risked their lives during the terrorist attacks
yari Nieves (Arbor Hill Elementary).
of Sept. 11, 2001. His efforts raised more than
$6 million for the cause.
Members of the Myers Middle School chorus Pine Hills Elementary School prekindergarten dad
helped get the holiday season rolling Dec. 8 with Jermaine Carter won the school's Thanksgiving
a performance at the Washington Park Lakehouse raffle Nov. 25. The raffle raised $273 to support the
as part of the 12th annual
the Crisis Team, which works to foster character edu-
in the Park. cation and positive behavior at school. The Honest
Weight Food Co-op in Albany donated a 14-pound
organic free-range turkey and school staff donated
all the trimmings.
Sheridan Preparatory Academy celebrated Thanks-
University at Albany students visited Pine Hills El-
giving on Nov. 25 with a feast that would have
ementary School on Nov. 25 to deliver donations
made the Pilgrims proud!
for the school's hugely successful food drive. Pine
Hills Safety Patrol students under the supervision
of faculty assistant Linda DiPietro organized the
effort. Donations were forwarded to Albany food
Local poet and motivational speaker Princess
Students at Delaware Community School partici-
Fludd visited Abrookin Career and Technical
pated in a news conference at their school Nov. 20
Center on Nov. 20 to talk with students about her
to announce Mayor Gerald D. Jennings' winter cloth-
life experiences, which include careers as a nurse
ing drop-off program. Delaware Community School
at Albany Medical Center and as a teacher at Philip
was one of several schools city-wide to receive
Livingston Magnet Academy.
donations of hats, gloves, mittens and coats.
Albany County District Attorney David Soares (right)
Harriet Gibbons High School held a College Day on
and JAMZ-96.3 personality Big Ray (left)
Nov. 17, allowing students to explore college and
Hackett Middle School on Nov. 19 to talk with
career options by participating in an online inven-
students about the "More Rhymes, Less Crime"
tory, followed by a College and Career Fair. At least
event at the Palace Theater on Nov. 22. Soares
a dozen colleges and agencies were represented at
and Big Ray also visited Albany High School later
Critically acclaimed children's book author and Eagle Point Elementary School first-grade teacher
Lin (second from right) visited Tammie Keough (seated at right) and student
New Scotland Elementary School on Nov. 5 to teacher Erin Tate (background, left) help stu-
speak to students about children's books and book dents cast their ballots in the presidential
publishing. You can read more about her visit in tion Nov. 3.
more about student voting acti-
Elementary section of this site. vities in the school district.
Students at Thomas O'Brien Academy of Science and
Technology (TOAST) got a chance to wear their pajamas
to school on Halloween as part of the school's PJs for
Presents initiative. PJs for Presents will help raise
money for the school to adopt a local family during
this year's holiday season. Students donated $1 for the
opportunity to wear pajamas. All students were able to
participate through the support of the TOAST Parent-
Teacher Association. The school, with about 410
students in kindergarten through sixth grade, hopes to
raise at least $800. PJs for Presents started during
the 2007-08 school year and was the idea of current
TOAST fourth-grader Amanda Eichenhofer, pictured at
right with her brother, Andrew Eck.
Michelle Paige Paterson (left), New York
Delaware Community School welcomed members
first lady, visited William S. Hackett Middle School
of the school community on Oct. 24 for Math Around
Oct. 30 to discuss her Healthy Steps to Albany
the World Night, coinciding with United Nations Day.
campaign. Mrs. Paterson spoke to an assembly
The event was an effort to embrace math and diver-
of students and learned about the Healthy Hackett
sity and increase parent involvement at the school.
Hawks initiative. Here she is joined by Superin-
Students were given "passports" and traveled to
tendent Eva C. Joseph, Ed.D., and board mem-
math stations representing 12 countries. Directions
ber Wayne Morris during a presentation in the
were provided in English and Spanish at each
nurse's office. Read more about Mrs. Paterson's
visit in the
31 Times Union.
Inclement weather moved the Pine Hills Elemen-
Giffen Memorial Elementary School joined with the
tary School Harvest Games inside Oct. 21, but it
Albany Fire Department for a "Keep the Peace" as-
didn't stop students from having fun!
sembly on Oct. 14. Students presented Albany Fire
Chief Robert C. Forezzi Sr., a lifelong South End resi-
dent, with a nonviolence banner that was put on dis-
play at the South End Fire House across S. Pearl
Street from Giffen.
North Albany Academy received a $5,000 grant
Delaware Community School launched a new safe-
from Citizens Bank on Oct. 8 to expand and grow
ty patrol in September in
partnership with the YMCA.
Love SAM (Science and Math) pro-
About 30 fourth- and fifth-graders signed up to be
gram. The grant will support a first-grade class.
charter members, with about that many more on a
Here, teacher Kim Gregory works with students
waiting list. Interim Principal Gary Beadnell says
in Agija VanderWeil's classroom using Love SAM
the program has had a big impact on student behav-
ior and school pride.
Albany High School sophomores Hanlon MacDon- Albany High School hosted the annual Pop Warner
ald (left) and Brook Longstaffe each set pool
Appreciation Night during the varsity football
ords during a meet at Schenectady on Sept. 26. game at Bleecker Stadium on Sept. 19. Players
Hanlon shattered the mark in the 100-meter back- and cheerleaders marched onto the field at half-
stroke, and Brooke set a new mark in the 100 time and received a free hot dog at the concession
butterfly. stand, compliments of the Albany Booster Club. The
district would like to thank the Pop Warner partici-
pants and families for their support and looks for-
ward to seeing these young athletes in royal blue
in the years to come!
Myers Middle School teacher Jennifer O'Leary
Albany High School seniors from the Career Ex-
(standing, second from right) spent a week
plorations in Education course of Jeffrey Weltz
sailing the Hudson River with five eighth-grade
(back row, fifth from right) visited district head-
students in September aboard the Half Moon,
quarters at Academy Park on Sept. 18. They learned
a replica of the ship Henry Hudson sailed in
about all aspects of district operations and employ-
the 1609 voyage that led him to the location
ment. Their tour concluded with a visit with Super-
that now is Albany. The Myers crew joined
intendent Eva C. Jospeh (seated, center).
their peers from three other middle schools in
a return to port Sept. 19 at the Corning Preserve.
Students participating on the voyage were (front
row, L-R) Alex Kellam, Tee Ahna Gilmore and
Michael Ortiz, and (back row, L-R) Tyler Stemp-
sey, Shannon Bradley and Chris Bangert-Downs.
Arbor Hill Elementary School and Thomas O'Brien
Academy of Science and Technology (TOAST) started the
school year together in the former Schuyler Elementary
School at 141 Western Ave. Arbor Hill Elementary
will be located there until September 2010 while that
school is renovated, and TOAST students will
return to their school in September 2009 once asbestos
abatement and other renovations are completed
there. On the first day Sept. 4, TOAST students in Julia Corazzini's third-grade classroom
(left) get situ-
ated in their new school. At right, Arbor Hill
Elementary students (L-R) Tabasia Allen, Keimaja Forel and
Shamar Metts reunite in the cafeteria before starting
Students file into the "new" William S. Hackett
Dual Language Program
fifth-graders (L-R) Jerry
Middle School for the first time on the opening day
Rivera, Bryanna Mendez and Janelle Rodriguez are
of school Sept. 3. The school was completely
all smiles on the first day of the new year at Dela-
renovated as part of the City School District of
ware Community School on Sept. 3.
Albany's facilities project. You can view more
photos in the
Hackett Photo Gallery.
William S. Hackett Middle School reopened at its
familiar location at 45 Delaware Ave. to start the 2008-09
school year. The City School District of Albany
unveiled the spectacular renovation project at a ribbon-cut-
ting ceremony for the community on Aug. 27. At left,
Superintendent Eva C. Joseph (center), Board of Education
President William Barnette (center left),
Hackett Principal Kenneth W. Newman (center, right) did the
Following the ceremony, approximately 300 visitors
toured the five-story school. You can view more photos
of the "new" Hackett in the
Hackett Photo Gallery.
City School District of Albany seventh-grade students
had the opportunity to participate in a science-based
summer program in 2008. Gateway Academy was supported
by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and
Project Lead the Way. Fifty students participated in
the program, which featured an introduction to nanoscience
through field trips to the University at Albany's
College of Nanoscale Science and
Engineering (above, left) and
hands-on projects such as building -- and launching!
-- water bottle rockets (above, right).
New York State Assembly Majority Leader Ron
Superintendent Eva C. Joseph, Ed.D., is joined by
Canestrari talks with students at North Albany
(L-R) district School Lunch Director J.W. Gayle,
Academy on July 29 about their participation in the
Albany County Executive Michael Breslin and Arbor
2008 Summer Reading Challenge Program. The
Hill Elementary School Principal Rosalind Gaines-
program challenges students to read for 15 min-
Harrell on June 30 to kick off the district's Summer
utes over 40 days during the summer.
Meals Program. The kickoff event was held at Arbor