Rockaways school holds assembly to mark progress since Sandy

October 29, 2013 4:33:58 PM PDT
A special assembly at a school in the Rockaways Tuesday morning marked how far the community has come after such a challenging year.

The school was so badly damaged, students were relocated for two months, all while many dealt with having their own homes in shambles.

Green baseball caps represented the partnership between the school and the not-for-profit Habitat for Humanity, which is teaching students how to rebuild things, but this school community already had rebuilding in their hearts.

One of four schools on the Beach Channel campus, Channel View is part of the Outward Bound network of public schools.

"Habitat" volunteers guided the students for repairs around the community.

"Homeless; something I thought I would never be, but then Sandy happened," said student Avanti Brown.

Poetry helped capture the challenges faced by students and their families after the storm.

"We hire people from the community, so I have a lot of staff members that lost their homes too, not just students, and are still not back in their homes," said Principal Patricia Tubridy.

Kaleel Anderson and his family published their own photo journal of living in shelters for many weeks after Sandy.

"We pretty much lost everything on the first floor; our living room, our dining room, our kitchen, my brother's room, the boiler room, so everything that was on the first floorcompletely washed away," said Kaleel.

The school's athletic facility is still a shambles, and the walkway along the waterfront is still caved in and buckled. But students and staff are standing proud.

"Sandy definitely, through all the struggles and everything, has made us stronger as a school," said student Hunter Hennessey.