A Huntington school was reincarnated Wednesday, coming back to life as the Jack Abrams STEM Magnet school, three years after the building was closed to classes.
Dignitaries, parents, children, a congressman, teachers, Board of Education members and the real-life Jack Abrams were on hand to celebrate the founding of a school devoted to science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Superintendent James W. Polansky praised the efforts of many, including staff members, U.S. Rep. Steve Israel, Board of Education members and corporate partners, such as Teq, for getting the building returned to use and for the shift to a STEM program. Polansky said Israel's office had been instrumental in pushing for funding to help the STEM program forward.
Israel, in turn, praised the tenacity of Polansky and others, and joked, "Sometimes they didn't even take 'yes' for an answer."
Jack Abrams, for whom the building is named, was one of many who greeted children as they arrived by car or bus for their first day.
Teachers, staff and children alike expressed enthusiasm as they arrived at the doors of the school.
Isabella, who said she was "7 and three quarter years old," was the first student dropped off at the entrance and pronounced herself excited, while reciting her credentials and knowledge of the STEM acronym.
The school closed three years ago after debate about safety in the neighborhood, though the building continued to serve as district administrative headquarters and occasionally hosted sports activities.