Governor George E. Pataki and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today announced the opening of the first Lower Manhattan public school to open in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks. Millennium High School, located in the financial district, will give preferential consideration to those who live in Lower Manhattan, providing a rigorous education to the growing number of families making a home downtown.
The Governor and Mayor were joined at the ribbon cutting ceremony by several public officials and community leaders, including LMDC Board Member and Community Board 1 Chair Madelyn Wils, who led the effort to make Millennium High School a reality.
"The opening of Millennium High School marks another great step forward in the revitalization of Lower Manhattan,” Governor Pataki said. “For the first time, Lower Manhattan’s families will have a local high school that promotes academic excellence—right in their own backyard. This past April, I announced a series of quality-of-life initiatives, with key milestones to be achieved within one year that will spur the continued growth and revitalization of Lower Manhattan. With today’s announcement, we deliver on yet another promise for the future of Lower Manhattan, making it an even better place to live, work and raise a family.”
"The development of Millennium High School shows what can be accomplished when all levels of government work together, along with public-spirited private citizens," said Mayor Bloomberg. "It's more evidence of how that kind of effective partnership is building a bright new future for Lower Manhattan. All across New York, when the school doors open on Monday morning, it will be the dawn of a new era in education in our city. The launch of this school will be a real highlight of that day-especially for the 220 students who will make this the launching pad for the next phase of their educational careers."
"We are working hard to provide all of the children in our City with a first rate education,” said New York City Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein. “The reality is that it all comes down to nurturing great neighborhood schools like the Millennium High School – where the real education takes place. That is why our Children First reforms focus resources and talent on supporting schools and improving teaching and learning in our classrooms.”
"Today, a victory for Lower Manhattan's high school students and their families has been realized, and I am so proud to have been a part of this victory," said Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. "With the opening of this first-rate Millennium High School we send a clear message that New York places a high value on education and academic achievement, because it is the foundation of democracy. The seeds of civility, opportunity and democracy have once again taken root and new hope has sprouted proudly and defiantly in Lower Manhattan."
LMDC Chairman John C. Whitehead said, “The opening of Millennium High School is an important contribution to the families of Lower Manhattan and the LMDC is proud to have played a role in its creation. The high school is part of the growing network of excellent downtown schools. The Millennium High School is an important new institution that will enhance Lower Manhattan’s position as a vibrant residential neighborhood.”
Madelyn Wils, Chairperson of Community Board 1 said, “As someone who has raised children in Lower Manhattan, I know first hand the needs of parents who live in the fastest growing residential neighborhood in Manhattan. The opening of Millennium High School is the product of the strong civic spirit of the community, especially the efforts of the members of Community Board 1 who worked with dedicated educators in the public school system to create this superb college preparatory school for Lower Manhattan’s motivated kids.”
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton said, "With the Millennium School becoming a reality, Lower Manhattan will flourish for both businesses and families. By addressing the educational needs of Lower Manhattan, the school is destined to become an anchor in the community. As a strong supporter of the Millennium School project, I have worked closely with local leaders to secure the Community Development Block Grant money for the LMDC. Indeed, I repeatedly requested that a portion of these federal dollars be used for the creation of a new high school to build a center of learning for the children and families of lower Manhattan."
Senator Charles E. Schumer said, “Opening Millennium High School is another milestone showing that Lower Manhattan is being restored – in this case by providing an excellent public high school especially for families who have stayed downtown.”
Assembly Member Deborah J. Glick said, “The opening of Millennium High School is testament to the strength and commitment of this diverse community to recovering and growing after the attack on our country on September 11th.”
Councilman Alan J. Gerson said, “This is a great step forward in turning Lower Manhattan into a true 24/7 community. I want to thank the Mayor, the Governor, the City Council, the State Assembly, the LMDC and Community Board 1 for working together to make this important project a reality.”
Millennium High School is a student-centered, nurturing school being run by educators who have a proven track record creating successful small high schools. The new, academically rigorous neighborhood high school will help retain families in Lower Manhattan, as well as attract new families with school-age children. Ensuring the stability and encouraging the growth of the residential population is integral to Lower Manhattan’s economic recovery from September 11th.
The Millennium High School is located at 75 Broad Street at the intersection of
Broad and South William Street. Three floors of what was once commercial office space are being converted into classrooms, administrative offices, and other school facilities. At full enrollment upon completion of all three floors, the Millennium High School will serve 500 students. A new class will be added each year until enrollment is full.
Millennium High School will open on Monday, September 8th to 220 ninth and tenth graders. Fundraising for the school was a collaborative effort. The fundraising campaign was led by LMDC Chairman John Whitehead, Madelyn Wils, the Department of Education, and the City of New York. The project is funded by a $3 million grant from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation at the request of Governor Pataki; $2 million secured by Speaker Silver and Assembly Member Glick; and $1 million secured by Council Member Gerson. The High School also received private funding including $1 million from the Goldman Sachs Foundation, and other sources. The fundraising campaign now enters a new phase in order to complete the renovation of the larger space required for the school’s eventual 500-student enrollment. Roy Moskowitz, Deputy to the Regional Superintendent of Instructional Region 9, and Richard Kennedy, a Community Board 1 vice chairman and Cushman & Wakefield executive, were key participants in the development of the school.