Home sweet home–Our new home, Peabody


Diamen Green, The Eagle Staff Reporter

Transition or Tranformation?

               PittsburghObamaAcademy’s last school year at129 Denniston Avenuehas come to an end.  The BOAIS Transition Team views this as a very positive change, and it looking forward to this “Transition with a Global Mission”, but as a student I see it as more of a transformation.  Since the 2009-2010 school year students such as myself from all across the city have been adapted to the environment here at Reizenstein Obama. Now that we will have a building to call our own, I think things will be very different.

`               Our new home will be located on the boundary of East Liberty andHighland Parkat515 North Highland Avenue. This is a building with a capacity of 1100 students which BOAIS believes enables our IB program to grow. The Barrack Obama Academy of International Studies (BOAIS) Transition Team is made up of over thirty members, with both staff and parents are involved. This is a very good support system, but with an expected student body of 1100 I’m more than sure many opinions and ideas of the students will be overlooked.

As far as the academic program goes the building serves as a perfect fit. There are many computer labs, libraries and wifi access. To most students this is a transformation from Reizenstein, where very seldom were we able to obtain wifi, or an empty and functional computer lab. So as far as technology goes, everything seems fine until you hear what students have to say. When I asked one student, Kionna Woods what she thought of the building she said “It has no windows, looks like a jail…We won’t get service will we?!”  The cell phone coverage problem is one of the biggest amongst our transferring Obama students.

ThePeabodybuilding in fact is much larger than Reizenstein however, allowing even more students to get lost and be late for class. Also allowing our program to grow, although I have heard the admissions test is pretty difficult for high school students. Athletics seem as though they will become very popular in this building. With a six lane pool, on site full athletic field, and the biggest gym in the PPS system we should have all the space we need to practice and become city champions in every sport!

Back in Reizenstein, it wasn’t uncommon to run into a middle school student once or twice. InPeabody’s building high school and middle school classes are on some of the same floors, but just different sides, which is similar to the Reizenstein set up.

All transportation for students will be school buses assigned to each community. Students are disappointed with this, but the OAIS Transition Team thinks it’s a good idea, sinceEast Libertyhas many buses, andHighland Avenuehas bike lanes. But what about our students that live on the North Side, for example? Some have to catch two buses, causing them to wake up and hour or two earlier than school starts to arrive on time. And with the talk of school beginning earlier, this makes for the possibility attendance rates declining in the near future.  Maybe the  BOAIS Transition Team should get some input from the BOAIS transferring students.

In all, students, parents and staff are making this move together. We all will still be at school to learn, and grow as an International Baccalaureate community. We Eagles are open minded, principled, risk takers that are up for the challenge. Transitioning and transforming is just the job for us!