School Restructuring 2024

Looking to Our Third Century

Honoring Our Legacy. Defining Our Future.

Community Announcement

List of 1 items.

  • Restructuring for 2024-2025

    Dear Albany Academies Community,
    We are writing today with an important update regarding some changes that will take place at The Albany Academies in the upcoming academic year. 

    Over the last few years, the School’s enrollment has been decreasing, mirroring the overall decline in private school enrollment in the region, driven in part by lower birthrates and ongoing economic uncertainty across the country.

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List of 7 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. What’s happening?

    The Albany Academies has announced a far-reaching plan to maintain focus on its core mission while developing a sustainable foundation for it to move forward for the next 100 years. The key elements of the plan – which has been developed by Senior Leadership and endorsed by the Board of Trustees  – are:
    • No longer offering the preschool program
    • Classes in the Lower School (Pre K – 4th Grade) will be co-educational
    • The Middle School will remain single-sex
    • The Upper School will be fully co-educational, including classes in grades 9 and 10
    • Implementing a reduction in staff and faculty of approximately 13% to right-size the School based on the new configuration and enrollment
  • Q. Why now?

    Enrollment at the Albany Academies has seen a decline over the last several years and that has resulted in annual deficits as revenues haven’t been able to keep pace with operating expenses. While these deficits have been absorbed by the school’s reserves, it has become clear that steps must be taken to align expenses with revenues.

    A number of market forces have contributed to enrollment decline, most notably a decrease in birth rates (down 13% over the last 10 years), changes in families’ ability to afford tuition, and demographic shifts in the Albany area. This seems to have been accelerated or amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    At the same time, independent schools nationally are challenged with changing demographics and economic conditions that require schools to implement responsible and sustainable business models. Fortunately, The Academies has an endowment that helps the School both in the near term and long term. Many independent schools without endowments have been forced to merge or close, something we are seeing happen here within the Capital Region with other schools. Fortunately, The Academies is not in this position. Restructuring now will help make sure we remain financially stable.
  • Q. Is the School in danger of closing?

    No. The school enjoys a strong balance sheet, including a growing endowment and relatively little debt.

    These changes are being implemented in response to economic and demographic trends nationwide and in the Capital Region. They reflect a more sustainable business model for current market conditions that will preserve The Academies for another 200 years. The Academies are restructuring within our existing charter and mission to provide both single-sex and co-educational opportunities for students. While these changes are being made to be responsive to the business climate, The Academies remain steadfastly committed to remaining the region's premiere school of academic excellence.
  • Q. Why is the Middle School being kept single-sex?

    Single-sex education for Middle School students plays a pivotal role in their journey through a time of their life marked by profound physical, social, intellectual, hormonal, and emotional changes. By providing a tailored and supportive environment, single-sex classrooms address the unique needs of students during these formative years, minimizing distractions and pressures associated with mixed-gender settings. This focused approach not only enhances academic engagement but also contributes significantly to the formation of self-confidence and empowerment. Recognizing the intricate nature of adolescence, single-sex education fosters an atmosphere that nurtures the formation of well-rounded individuals, preparing them for future success both academically and personally.
  • Q. Why keep the Upper School fully co-educational?

    Becoming fully coeducational allows the Academies to implement additional cost containment with limited impact to the educational program. Further, becoming fully coeducational allows for a more fluid scheduling process that will better serve students and teachers, creating more balanced classes.
  • Q. How will the school honor its single-sex history and traditions?

    Wherever possible, the co-curricular programs of the school will remain single-sex. This includes separate meetings for boys and girls (such as Chapel and Morning Meetings) during the school day, separate student governments, separate organizing structures (Houses and Sisters Classes), and separate celebrations (Bacon Bat and House Day).
  • Q. What is the vision for the School going forward?

    The ongoing vision is to maintain and improve the reputation of The Albany Academies as a premier academic institution that develops high-character, intellectually curious students and prepares them for future success. The school employs talented faculty and staff who are respected for following current best practices in education. These powerful educators teach time-honored content and skills that our graduates use to be successful in higher education and life beyond. They also collaborate cross-departmentally and divisionally in spaces and programs geared towards educational student experiences and design thinking. This approach allows us to provide innovative learning experiences and authentic leadership opportunities, which are coupled with an abundance of co-curricular opportunities for student engagement.

Upper School Campus

Lower And Middle School Campus

Schellenberger Alumni/ae Center