Listening to our students' voices
ALBANY, N.Y. (March
14, 2018) – On March 14, students
at Albany High School and the City School District of Albany's three
middle schools joined their peers nationwide in coming together to
advocate for school safety and to honor the memory of the 17 people who
lost their lives in last month's school shooting in Parkland, Fla.
At Albany High, students took part in a
voluntary assembly and march as part of the nationwide movement. The
demonstration was organized entirely by Albany High students to speak
out on the issue of school safety and the power of their own voices.
Albany High Senior Class President Shafiyq
Grady was instrumental to his school’s preparations. “There is only so
much the adults can do,” he said. “There is only so much administrators
can do. The students – our voices – need to be heard, because we are the
next generation, and what we do and say now is what’s going to matter
years from now.”
You can view
this video featuring Shafiyq and fellow student leaders talking
about the importance of making their voices heard, and
this video of students expressing their voices and demonstrating at
Students at each of our three middle schools
made their voices heard as well.
At Edmund J. O’Neal Middle School of
Excellence, student representatives from each grade paid tribute to the
victims of the Parkland shooting through readings over the school’s PA
system, with students releasing a balloon into the sky for each victim
as well. Classrooms also came together to sign cards and offer messages
of hope and positivity to send to those affected by the tragedy.
At Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School,
students joined together in the auditorium for a series of video
presentations and to reflect on the issue through silent vigil.
Principal Jennifer Chatain closed the assembly by encouraging students
to be leaders, and to help spread positive change in the world. Students
also participated in announcements throughout the day paying tribute to
those who lost their lives.
Following an assembly honoring the Parkland
victims, students at William S. Hackett Middle School had the option to
take part in a voluntary march outside the building. Students filed
outside and were ushered into rows of 17. For 17 minutes they stood
outside, and for every person killed in Parkland, a Hackett student
released an orange helium balloon into the air.
You can also Superintendent Kaweeda G. Adams’
message regarding our students’ voices
The mission of
the City School District of Albany is
to work in partnership with our diverse community to engage every
learner in a robust educational program designed to provide the
knowledge and skills necessary for success. The district
around 9,600 students in 18 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.