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Avella gives $1M to Bayside HS for upgrades

By Gabriel Rom

Bayside High School will receive major infrastructure renovations to the tune of $1 million, courtesy of state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside).

Avella presented a check Friday for the restoration of the school’s aging auditorium and a new athletic field house.

Principal Michael Athy received the check on behalf of the city Department of Education, which will be responsible for the implementation of the projects.

Of the $1 million that Avella will appropriate for Bayside High School’s Capitol Improvement Request, $750,000 will go toward the restoration of the auditorium. The auditorium has a seating capacity of 1,300 and has been used for theatrical performances, concerts and cultural events for 80 years. Extensive use, however, has ultimately led to a deterioration of the auditorium’s seating.

The remaining $250,000 will go toward a new athletic field house. The renovations will include the restoration of lockers, showers, bathrooms and the exterior for the school’s more than 100 outdoor PSAL athletic teams.

Avella said this type of discretionary funding from elected officials was especially important as many schools in the area do not get Title I funding to cover students from lower-income neighborhoods, which is renewed yearly. Bayside is receiving Title I funding this year.

“A million dollars is not something I’m able to do everyday,” he said.

Reach reporter Gabriel Rom by e-mail at grom@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4564.

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