New School to Debut in Buffalo

August 23, 2012 Updated Aug 23, 2012 at 7:57 AM EDT

By WKBW News

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August 23, 2012 Updated Aug 23, 2012 at 7:57 AM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) - In less than two weeks, City of Buffalo officials will take the wraps off the former Kensington High School. It has undergone a $20 million restoration. The art deco building will be sparkling when 850 students move in to Public School 156, The Frederick Law Olmsted School at Kensington.

The Olmsted program began more than 30 years ago and parents had been requesting a high school for many years. They graduated their first class in June. Come September, all of the students in grades 5 through 12 will be under one roof, something Principal Mike Gruber is looking forward to. "Having two sites is difficult, not only for the administration and management of the school, but also to keep the vigor up in the student body."

Dr. Gruber says the city didn't just renovate a building for the sake of renovating. They planned it so it would support the Olmsted program. For example, 12th graders will work one on one with business people and community leaders in a special project room. "So they'll be able to do their projects. They'll be able to work with people in the field and give a presentation to those people as opposed to doing a presentation for a teacher."

Dr. Gruber says the goal is to mold students into problem solvers and collaborators so they are ready for college, can land jobs and use those skills to serve the community.

A grand opening for the new facility is planned for this fall.

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