This Is A Very Sad Day For Me..
June 26, 2011 11:11am CST
TROY -- Students and staff repeated one word Friday, the last day at School 12. "Just so Sad". I went to school 12 from K-6th grade, my kids went to this school, then I drove School bus for this School, my grandkids went to this school just last year before they moved to another part of the city. I have so many wonderful memories from School 12. From growing up there to watching my kids and grandkids in school concerts, parties and dances. The echo of laughter in the hallways! It just brings a tear to my eye to know there are no more schools left in South troy. Here is the story from our local paper. There were tears and hugs. Kids, some of whom have attended the neighborhood elementary school since pre-K, walked out of the school, dubbed the Home of the Koalas, for the last time at 8:50 a.m. Despite months of vigorous opposition from parents, teachers and students, in March, the Troy City School District Board of Education voted 7-2 to close the school to save $1 million. Fifth-grader Miguel Hiraldo lined up at his classroom door for the last time with his arm around a friend wearing a T-shirt that was signed like a yearbook. "I don't know, I feel sad, I don't know where I'm going now,'' Miguel said. Fifth-graders will suffer the worst, said teacher Sarah March-O'Hearn. "Many of them have been together since preschool and have formed strong friendships, and now they will be divided up between three different elementary schools,'' she said. "They've also grown close over the last couple of months going to school board meetings to speak in opposition to the closings, and making signs.'' The school's 480 students will attend schools 14 or 16 or Carroll Hill Elementary School. In September, the School 12 building will house the seventh and eighth grades while Doyle Middle School is rebuilt. Outside the school, teachers lined up to wave to departing school buses, and parents captured their kids' last day on camera. "Stop crying. It's not that bad,'' Nicola Mele said to his daughter Isabella as he walked backward, focusing a camera to take a picture of her and six friends. "This is hard, but we have to just move on,'' Mele said. "I just hope the kids can make some sense for themselves of this.'' Asked how she felt, Isabella was upset and at a loss for words. The three-story structure opened in 1927 at a cost of $600,000. About half of the students walk to school from the South Troy neighborhood that grew with the families of employees who worked the many industries that once lined the Hudson River in that area of the city. James Gaudreau ran up the sidewalk to the main school entrance carrying his camera as a large group, including Principal Tracy Ford, gathered on the front steps for a parting group shot. Gaudreau's daughter Semaj, 10, and son Santino, 7, stood in the group. "I feel bad for the kids,'' Gaudreau said. "How can we spend billions of dollars on conflicts and problems around the world and then do this to our kids at home? Makes you wonder.'' The principal said he has yet to hear what he'll be doing next year. "This change has been tough to deal with but, you know, it's part of life and the challenge of moving forward,'' Ford said.