Friday was the first day of school for the City of Albany, but only for some students.
• All elementary students
• Middle school students in grades 6-7 attending their school for the first time
• Albany High School freshmen
• Albany International Center students attending that program for the first time
All other students should report to school on Monday.
This year, there are nearly 700 incoming freshmen. Principal Jodi Commerford said the phased in approach allows the new students to familiarize themselves with the building, before the sophomores, juniors and seniors come barreling through the halls on Monday. “There’s over 2,500 students here and with the renovation and the rebuild it allows our freshmen to get to know the staff that they’re going to be working with. We have a lot of feeder schools from our middle schools coming in, so it also allows students to get to know the other freshmen who they maybe didn’t go to middle school with,” said Commerford.
To make things a litte bit more organized, they also divvy up their students into four academies based on their interests:
Innovation — STEM focused
Discovery — music and the arts.
Leadership — business and finance
Citizenship — for those interested in international studies, social services or culinary.
“All of our students can leave Albany High School college or career ready and they can actually leave here with certificates for many trades.” said Commerford.
Many students said they’re ready to hit the ground running.
“I’m looking forward to winning my games and passing my classes,” said Charles.
“I’m looking forward to making new friends and having a fun time,” said Neel.
“I’m looking forward to the theater program,” said Donovan.
“I’m looking forward to sports like lacrosse,” said Hannah.
Their teachers said they are looking forward to getting to know them.
“When they first come in they are usually super sweet and a little scared. This is a huge building, but they become their own very quickly,” said Stephanie Czachor, who teaches Social Studies.
“I’m just very excited about the kids. It’s why we do what we do. If I was here for a paycheck, I would pick something else, but I love the kids that’s what it’s all about,” said Mackenzie Pratt, who teaches Social Studies.