It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to have the President visit your school district and it's an opportunity Syracuse gets to take advantage of this week. On Tuesday, Superintendent Sharon Contreras spoke to the media about President Obama's visit. As Iris St. Meran explains, Contreras says the President's visit and message will mean so much to the district, the students and the community.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- All eyes will be on Henninger High School and the Syracuse City School District on Thursday evening. There will be some 11th and 12th graders from across the district in attendance. Superintendent Sharon Contreras thinks President Obama's visit will have a lasting impression on the students.
Contreras said, "I think that the students will be motivated and inspired and it's just a reminder about how important college is and how important school is."
Contreras wouldn't disclose why Henninger was chosen. She did say the President will be talking about higher education and affordability. She does hope what the district and city have accomplished, specifically with SAY YES and other programs can be highlighted.
"We, too, aspire for college to be affordable and for our students to attend college if they so choose and to make sure our students are ready," Contreras explained.
The district is getting ready for the President's visit by helping the White House and Secret Service with whatever they may need. But crews have been busy the past few days making sure the building is all set for Thursday.
"We were already in the process because school opens in about two weeks. We just kept doing what we were doing to make sure that the building was ready,” Contreras added, “Of course now we have a lot more people in the building."
Contreras says she has limited information about the specifics of Thursday's event and she says she doesn't know yet what her role might be because the district is not in charge of the planning.
She said since the news broke about their special guest, the district has been fielding many calls and most people on the other end are just excited to welcome President Obama to the city and Henninger.
The Henninger Jazz Band will be performing for guests before the president arrives, Thursday.