ROCHESTER, N.Y. — With summer vacation only a month away, students at two Rochester schools started a project they hope will make a huge difference going into the next school year.
Students at Northeast College Preparatory High School and Northwest Junior High School spent their Saturday putting together a new outdoor classroom space that includes benches, a garden and a yoga platform.
Senior Rhakye Gibson-Cuffie is one of the students that actually presented this idea to the school.
"Honestly I feel this project will change a lot of people's lives,” said Gibson-Cuffie. “For the students that are having trouble at home and are still able to make it to school, I feel this would be their warmth place where they feel fantastic, going into the future this will do a lot more for the school. It would help the kids out more for when they really need it."
Northeast Principal David Passero explained the project came about because a Student Voices Committee the school recently formed allowed students the opportunity to voice their opinions on how to improve the school.
Passero believes it has already made a difference.
"We have students that have been awarded grants,” said Passero. “They have advocated for a lot of the funds for these projects today and when you listen to our youth and their youth voices present in the school."
While this school year is almost over, it has sophomore Nicole Tanco, a member of the student voices committee, looking forward to the next semester.
"I'll be really happy, plus I will be a junior by then, so I got two more years technically, but it’s exciting because I know that I help make this happen,” said Tanco. “And the new kids that are going to be coming into our school are going to be able appreciate what we did."
For freshman Omariana Curry, building this outdoor space lets them put their own stamp on the school
"Knowing that students came up with this idea and new kids are coming into this school,” said Curry. “It would give the new kids an idea of like students are being heard; maybe I can contribute some of my ideas."
Passero estimates it will take two to three weeks to complete the project.