Advisory group: District may need four middle schools
N.Y. (April 25, 2017) -- The committee tasked with studying long-term
enrollment in the City School District of Albany on Monday recommended
that the district may need to operate four middle schools in the future to accommodate its
increasing student population.
The Phase 2 Grade Configuration Steering Committee –
made up of parents, community members and district staff – is studying
long-term middle-school enrollment options in the district as the number
of students continues to exceed the existing space available.
Enrollment in the district’s elementary and middle
schools is up more than 26 percent since 2008-09. Based on a
December 2015 demographic study, the district anticipates as many as
425 more students in grades 6-8 by the start of the 2025-26 school year.
The committee’s charge is to recommend where
students should attend middle school and how middle schools should be
enrolled. In June the committee will report its recommendations to the
Albany Board of Education, which has the final say.
Committee members on Monday discussed possible
locations for four schools and is expected to make a formal
recommendation at its May meeting. In addition to Stephen and Harriet
Myers Middle School and William S. Hackett Middle School, the committee
discussed the following middle school options:
Convert Arbor Hill Elementary School into a middle school and
continue to operate the new middle school opening in September at 50
North Lark St. Arbor Hill Elementary students would attend
North Albany Academy. Arbor Hill and North Albany both would require
renovations. Arbor Hill would need to be renovated to accommodate
middle-school students and North Albany would need to be expanded to
accommodate the Arbor Hill students.
Convert North Albany
Academy into a middle school and continue to operate the new middle
school opening in September at 50 North Lark. North Albany
Academy students would attend Arbor Hill Elementary School. Both
North Albany and Arbor Hill would require renovations.
Convert both Arbor
Elementary School and North Albany Academy into middle schools and
convert the new middle school at 50 North Lark into an elementary
school to serve the Arbor Hill Elementary and North Albany students.
All the schools would require renovations.
The committee previously considered but rejected two other
options: taking no action or building a new middle school.
May meeting, the committee will receive estimates of the cost of each
The committee also asked district staff to
investigate potential enrollment patterns for three schools by
evenly spreading the higher-performing elementary schools and
lower-performing elementary schools across the middle schools to create
a better balance.
The committee’s next meeting is
May 22 from 6-8 p.m. at Harriet Gibbons Student Services Center, 75
Watervliet Ave. Members of the
public are welcome to attend and observe.
to learn more about the committee’s work in the past 18 months.