2002-10-26 / Columnists

Chatting With Chapey

Democratic District Leader
Education in the News
By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey,

By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey,

Democratic District Leader
Education in the News

Governor George Pataki was the featured guest at the dedication of Middle School 137. This outstanding addition to District 27 is called America's School of Heroes and is located on 98th Street in Ozone Park.

Pataki highlighted the spectacular accomplishments of heroes from everyday life. He especially praised the teachers, administrators and the 6000 students who evacuated their schools located near the World Trade Center in such an orderly, safe and admirable manner last year on September 11th. "Each of them was a hero!" "Each of you who are enrolled in MS137 today can be a hero by helping each other, by helping your neighbors and helping your community." You are our future leaders, he reminded the youngsters, and you are our next generation of great American heroes. MS 137 provides new hope and new opportunities for each of you to succeed.

Accolades were showered on other education institutions: 91 percent of the graduates of teacher education programs in the City University of New York passed the challenging New York State Regents Certification exams; plans by the State and City are moving swiftly to develop Governor's Island as the new campus for the City University of New York; The School Construction Authority completed MS 137 with less money and in a shorter time - surpassing their previous school building record.

On hand to applaud this important educational event were Dr. Geraldine D. Chapey member NYS Board of Regents, Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, Councilman Joseph Addabbo, Senator Serphin Maltese and Senator Ada Smith.

Borough President Marshall spoke enthusiastically about improving education on all levels as one of her major goals. As the former Chair of High Education for the City Council, President Marshall has a distinguished record of accomplishments for education at all levels in the Borough of Queens.

Following the formal ceremonies guests were invited on a guided tour of this extraordinarily beautiful school. Rave reviews were the order the day by the visitors. As they walked through - "Warm and inviting", "I wish I could go to school all over again - right here".  "What a great classroom!" "The library is magnificent." "The art room is inspiring!" 

On the tour, Principal Eileen Lew, proudly highlighted the state of the art science labs, the up to speed computer centers, the well designed and equipped music room and the lovely spacious well stacked shelves in the library.

MS 137 is a very welcome addition to the district. It is our wish that the youngsters will enjoy excellent educational experiences at this American School of Heroes and be well prepared to take their place as future citizens and leaders in the 21st Century.

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