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PR- 121-09
March 16, 2009


116,000 Classroom Seats to be created by 2012

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein, and School Construction Authority President Sharon Greenberger today congratulated the New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) on its 20th anniversary. Charged by the Governor and State Legislature in December 1988 with building new schools and managing the design, construction, and renovation of capital projects for the City's then 1,200 public school buildings-half of which were constructed prior to 1949-the SCA has since built more than 250 school buildings and additions. Under this Administration, the SCA will create 116,000 classroom seats by 2012, thanks in part to an historic agreement between the Mayor and State Legislature that fully funded the current SCA capital plan for a record $13 billion.  The plan, which runs from 2005-2009, will create 55,000 new seats, with roughly 34,000 new seats coming on line in 2009-2010; another 25,000 seats are proposed in the next capital plan. In the current year, the City is on target to open 22 new school buildings for this September and is also opening 47 new science labs in middle and high schools during the 2008-2009 school year. The Mayor, Chancellor, and SCA President were joined at the celebration at Gracie Mansion by Deputy Mayor for Education and Community Development Dennis M. Walcott, Deputy Chancellor Kathleen Grimm, former SCA executives and trustees, and local and state legislators.

"Our students are benefiting today from the work the SCA has accomplished and continues to accomplish with state-of-the-art, energy-efficient construction," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Students learn best in well-maintained buildings, and I congratulate Sharon for her work in implementing the capital plan and salute the SCA's commitment to the City's public school children."

"I have seen the SCA's work first hand, and salute Sharon and her staff, who have done a phenomenal job of providing safe, functional school buildings, such as the Gregorio Luperon High School in Washington Heights and the Bathgate Educational Campus in the Bronx," said Deputy Mayor Walcott.

"As a trustee since 2002, I have witnessed the dedication of the SCA to meet its goals and give our students school environments that are conducive to learning," said Chancellor Klein. "I congratulate Sharon and her staff for a job well done and for always trying to improve on their past accomplishments."

"For the past seven years, I have worked closely with Sharon and before her, William Goldstein, and their staffs, and they have done a tremendous job in maintaining our facilities and building safe schools for our public school students," said Deputy Chancellor Kathleen Grimm. "I congratulate them all."

"The incredible list of SCA accomplishments would not have been possible without our extraordinary staff," said SCA President Greenberger. "Their intelligence, tenacity and dedication have helped established the SCA as a model for school construction programs throughout the nation."

Besides the bricks and mortar, the SCA has reached out to minority, women, and locally-based enterprises and provided a mentoring program to help grow these small businesses. It also created programs that link schools to jobs through summer internships. One such program is Construction Skills, which provides hands-on training in professional environments to city public school students. Additionally, in 2007, officials from the Department of Education and the SCA, which is part of the Department of Education, established the "Green Schools Rating System" to guide the sustainable construction and operation of new school buildings to conserve energy and water consumption. The City opened the first "green" public school at PS 59 in Manhattan in September 2008.


Stu Loeser/Dawn Walker   (212) 788-2958

David Cantor   (Education)
(212) 374-5141

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