APRIL 2024

Budget vote coming up May 21

April means many things in the annual cycle of a school district.

It’s a time to celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day, and to focus on those steps each of us can take to help foster a healthier environment for future generations. 

It’s a time for state exams in grades 3-8, and for athletic teams to burst back outside after many student-athletes spent the winter season competing indoors. 

It’s a time for seniors to finalize their college choices, and all of their plans for the open book of possibilities that await them following graduation, just a couple of months away.

It’s also a time for school districts to begin looking ahead in earnest to the school year to come. The most visible example of this is the annual budget vote and Board of Education election, which is coming up Tuesday, May 21. 

Our board finalized our 2024-25 budget proposal on April 18. The $326.2 million proposal has no tax-levy increase for the second year in a row, and the fourth time in the last nine years. The proposed budget would maintain all current programs and staffing, while also making new investments to support students.

That includes 25.6 new positions proposed for next school year. 

Voters this year also will have three school-related ballot propositions to consider – to create a new Capital Reserve Fund, to purchase two 10-person vans to help with transportation, and to purchase a parking lot that the district currently leases for employees at Academy Park, our district headquarters building. 

None of these would have any additional impact on taxes. 

We know these continue to be challenging economic times for many in our community. Our board and district always are mindful of our community’s fiscal realities in drafting the annual budget proposal, and never more so than this year. 

We hope you’ll remember to vote May 21, and if you’d like to vote earlier from the comfort of home, there also is a new early voting option for all eligible voters to make the process more convenient and accessible. 

Please also watch your mailboxes in May for the budget edition of our district newsletter, Capital Education, and if you’d like a budget presentation for your organization you can call our Communications Department at (518) 475-6065.

We hope you’re enjoying a wonderful spring season!






Joseph Hochreiter

Gov. Hocul smiling and meeting with students and their teacher

Visits from top state policymakers

April was a big month for big visits!

On April 26, Gov. Kathy Hochul visited Albany School of Humanities (ASH) to see an example of our district’s literacy instruction program in action, and to champion her support for explicit phonics instruction and the science of reading. Our district has been a leader in this critical area since 2016, with student results on ELA and reading benchmarks supporting this approach.

And two days before the governor's visit, a group of college-bound Albany High seniors had the opportunity to share their financial aid application experiences with some top state policymakers! SUNY Chancellor John B. King, Deputy Secretary for Education Maria Fernandez and Assemblymember Patricia A. Fahy had a roundtable discussion with the students to discuss any obstacles they faced in completing the FAFSA and TAP applications, both of which help determine whether a student is eligible for college financial aid.

Student and teacher posing for a photo

Job Fair success

A big thank you to everyone who came out to our district Job Fair on April 27 at Albany High School!

The district welcomed 81 people interested in employment to help serve our students and families, with 24 attendees receiving on-the-spot interviews. There are 42 applications under review in areas such as maintenance, food service and security, and another 11 individuals who are either finalists for teaching positions or already hired as full-time and substitute teaching assistants. 

As a reminder, we are always hiring for positions in a variety of areas throughout our district, and offer excellent health care benefits. Retirement options are available for full-time employees. We also have a range of substitute positions open for a more flexible schedule, and our starting salaries are regionally competitive.

You can visit our employment page at any time to see our current openings.

Celebrating Arbor Day at North Albany

Arbor Day was the perfect hands-on lesson for eighth-graders at North Albany Middle School who worked to not just beautify the school's property, but also support the urban ecosystem through tree planting!

On April 26, Emily Statham's agriculture students joined forces with volunteers from the local and state organizations to help plant 40 trees that will complement current classroom learning and also be incorporated into future curriculum.

Mock Trial team posing for a photo

Auto tech classroom receives EV

Automotive technology students at Albany High can now learn the tricks of their trade on an electric vehicle, thanks to a donation from the New York Power Authority!

On April 18, local VIPs joined automotive teacher Patrick Whitton and his students to celebrate the donation – a 2019 Subaru Crosstrek plug-in hybrid car.

Marie Culihan

Principal Culihan: Administrator of the Year

Please join us in congratulating Albany School of Humanities (ASH) Principal Marie Culihan on being named Administrator of the Year from The Capital Area Principals and Supervisors Association (CAPSA)!

“To receive this award is truly an amazing honor and privilege that represents the hard work and dedication of our entire ASH community. It exemplifies the hard work of our district administrators and every educator and support staff member who has helped shaped ASH into the amazing school that it is,” said Culihan.

Culihan – who has been leading ASH for seven years now – is one of only five administrators from around the state who was recognized at the annual Empire State Supervisors and Administrators Association (ESSAA) banquet on April 26. She is also the third district administrator to win the award in the last six years, joining Arbor Hill Elementary School Principal Rosalind Gaines-Harrell (2019) and Pine Hills Elementary School Principal Tia Corniel (2022).

Looking ahead

Don't forget that you can view our online calendar for a look at all the important events coming up throughout the district and at our schools! Also, be sure the contact email we have on file for you is correct so that you automatically receive regular updates through SchoolMessenger, and don't forget to follow us on our various social media platforms!

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