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New and improved Kernan Elementary School ready for first day

When Kernan Elementary School in Utica opens its doors for the first day of school on Thursday, students won’t recognize it.

Posted: Sep. 5, 2018 5:17 PM

UTICA – When Kernan Elementary School in Utica opens its doors for the first day of school on Thursday, students won’t recognize it.

The dark, dated building they’ve known for years is gone. In its place at 929 York Street now stands a bright, state-of-the-art building.

The $13 million project on the building built in 1913 was the result of a voter-approved referendum, and it started about a year and a half ago. The project included a new cafeteria, bigger classrooms and technology upgrades.

The principal says she’s most looking forward to reaching each kid at their level.

“Some of the things we’re really looking forward to in technology is an upgrade in … we have TV monitors and not smart boards so much anymore. Everything is state of the art,” said Denise DiSpirito, principal of Kernan Elementary School. “All of the kids will have laptops. There are no labs in the building anymore, so we’re really starting to individualize instruction, which has never been able to happen before.”

The laptops will stay in the school.

Beginning in the summer of 2020, the new addition will be the site of the Utica City School District Board of Education and administrative offices.

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