Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan & School Construction Authority President Lorraine Grillo Join Principal William Bassell to Hold Groundbreaking Ceremony at the Academy Of American Studies

December 3, 2018
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On Monday, December 3 Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan and School Construction Authority President Lorraine Grillo joined Principal William Bassell, local elected officials, civic leaders and residents to hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the new school of Academy of American Studies (Q575). 

“I am proud to see the Academy of American Studies finally get a proper school building” said Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan.  “Principal William Bassell and our community has advocated for this school for a long time.  I am grateful to Lorraine Grillo, President of the SCA for today’s groundbreaking.”

The new building will be fully air conditioned, accessible, four story high school. The 969 seat school will have thirty standard classrooms, two district special education classrooms, and three resource rooms. 

"The groundbreaking for the new Academy of American Studies building is truly a momentous occasion, as it will bring our school into a 21st century state-of-the-art facility” said William Bassell, Principal, Academy of American Studies High School.  “We are grateful to the many students, who made attaining this new school building their mission, and we are also grateful to Assemblymember Cathy Nolan, whose unswerving guidance and unstinting support helped us to bring this 20 year dream to a vibrant and exciting reality.” 

“Community Board 1 has long advocated for more seats in our high schools.  We are thrilled the Academy of American Studies, one of the best high schools in our state, will be housed in a beautiful state of the art building in our neighborhood.   Thank you to Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan for pushing this project forward” said Marie Torniali, Chair, Queens Community Board 1. 

"Community Board 2 is grateful to our local elected officials and the School Construction Authority for finding an acceptable location to build a new school near our district. Creating a state of the art high school helps to prepare our children to compete in the global environment. We are thankful the education of our students has been made a priority once again” said Denise Keehan-Smith, Chairwoman, CB2 Queens.

"This school is welcomed to the Dutch Kills community and look forward to thousands of students who will attend on their way to the American dream" said George Stamatiades, President, Dutch Kills Civic Association. 

"One of the greatest needs in our community is having enough school seats for our kids and today’s announcement is good news on that front," said Senator Michael Gianaris"I will keep fighting for more schools throughout western Queens until all parents can be assured their children will have a seat in which to learn." 

"I am excited for the new Academy of American Studies in Dutch Kills and proud to have helped secure the funding for what will be a state of the art facility. The Academy of American Studies is one of the best schools in our city and state, and its talented students and faculty deserve a beautiful, modernized building where they can reach their full potential," said Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer.

The facility will also include a competition-sized gymnasium with locker rooms. It will also have two science demo labs, two science labs, and two science prep rooms. Music and art classrooms as well as a technology lab, a medical suite, a guidance suite, and a library will be included.  An administrative suite, kitchen, student and staff dining areas, and a parent room, will also be provided.  The outdoor play area will include four handball courts, a half court for basketball, and a reading area.