Senate Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins Tours Proposed Future Site of CNY STEAM School

Apr 12, 2019

State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins joined other leaders Friday for a tour of the proposed future site of Onondaga County’s Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math, or STEAM school. 

The former Central Tech High School was built in 1900, but has remained mostly vacant since closing in 1975.  Stewart-Cousins promised her support as the details come together.

SCSD Superintendent Jaime Alicea greets Sen. Rachel May and Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins in the marble lobby of Central Tech.
Credit Scott Willis / WAER News

"I think they're still trying to assess the costs, and obviously there's still a lot of elements.  If there are legislative things we have to do, we will work towards making sure we are part of the coming to fruition of this great vision."

This school is part of the larger Syracuse Surge initiative.  Superintendent Jaime Alicea says the school will have a capacity of more than one thousand students; more than half will be from Syracuse and the rest from across Central New York.  He says they’ve received letters of support from 12 other districts. 

"We don't have a performing arts, a visual arts program for our kids.  We want to make sure that the program is not only for students in the City of Syracuse, but also for students in Central New York."

A relic of the past? A chalkboard hangs in one of the more recently remodeled rooms off the main lobby.
Credit Scott Willis / WAER News

Syracuse Deputy Mayor Sharon Owens says the focus is to bridge the gap between technology and arts in the workforce. 

"We didn't transition our workforce.  Not only are we going to prepare the existing workforce, but preparing the future workforce in this grand historic building."

The STEAM school is set to be introduced for the 2021-2022 school year.