Parents consider other alternatives to public school during pandemic

Albany County

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS 10)— Amid the coronavirus pandemic, parents have been seeking other alternatives instead of sending their children to public school.

“We have seen about a 25 percent increase about people inquiring about The Albany Academies,” said Chris Lauricella, Head of School at The Albany Academies.

He stated everyone wants to make the best decision for their children during these uncertain times, and explained why his school is appealing to parents.

“We have all the amenities,” said Lauricella. “We’ve got a gym, we’ve got a pool, we’ve got a very large practice area. It’s a 52 acre campus and about a 300,000 square feet of building for 700 students. So we are scaled differently and we can do things that our public school colleagues just can’t.”

In the last week, the Albany Academies gave
12 school tours. This year, The school is offering the option of either in-person or distance learning.

“ We are using space a lot differently,” explained Lauricella. “We are putting up tents outside. We are having kids inside and outside. We are ventilating all of the exterior classrooms. Everything your hearing about all the other schools, we are doing as well”

While The Albany Academies is private and independent school, the Albany Catholic Diocese said there has also been an increase in interest and enrollment in Catholic Schools.

In a statement the diocese says, “Each of the 21 schools in the Diocese has submitted a reopening plan to the Department of Health and the State Education Department and is preparing to reopen with options that include full-time on-site education, hybrid models, and fully remote availability. Families may select the option that best serves their individual needs.”

News 10 caught up with the principal of St. Kateri Tekakwitha to talk about the school’s social distancing plans.

“We worked out some systems to make sure the children will have social distancing with the use of individual desk barriers and other barriers on their desk. Children will be wearing masks for part of the day, but we will be having a lot of masks breaks” said Principal, Tosha Grimmer.

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