Parents hope for another option ahead of school board budget vote


ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Parents of Albany City School District students plan on attending a school board vote on proposed budget cuts this Tuesday. The cuts would see hundreds of layoffs, and its 7th to 12th grade students would continue virtual learning, among other cost saving moves.

“I do not want my daughter going to into the 9th grade if she’s not ready for it. And I think this virtual learning, it does exactly that,” said parent Andres Rivera.

Andres and his wife Janavia have seen the toll that virtual learning has taken on their eighth grade student Lavay. While Janavia said their family’s able to keep an eye on Lavay’s virtual studies, not all parents have the same luxury.

“They think it’s a holiday and now their school grades, it suffers,” Janavia said.

Lavay said she saw a dramatic decrease in her grades when school went virtual in March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“I had 80s, 90s, when I was in school. Then I went down to 70s, 60s,” Lavay said. “It was just really bad, and I was disappointed in myself.”

Andres said he fears if the district does not look at other options, his daughter and the about 3,500 other students, who will continue to learn from home, will be adversely impacted.

“Let me prepare her. I went to college, you know, [Janavia] went to college. You know, we want her to continue that legacy. I cannot continue a legacy if the school is shorthanded, bottom line,” Andres said.

The school board plans to meet at 6:30 p.m. at the Albany School of Humanities. The meeting will be held both in-person and virtually. Those who attend the meeting in-person are asked to wear a mask and follow social distancing guidelines.

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