SBRT’S Upcoming Events

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Dear Partners,

Read below to find out about upcoming SBRT events and helpful information for local families.

Early Childhood Education Policy Discussion

On August 15, SBRT will host early childhood providers to discuss the recent DOE Birth-To-Five RFP for Center-Based and School-Based programs. Findings will be used as recommendations for how municipal systems can improve the application process and overall engagement with local early childhood providers.

SBRT Early Childhood Policy Discussion
Thursday, August 15th | 9:00 am
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd
RSVP Here

Parent Focus Group

SBRT wants to hear from the parents and caregivers of infants and toddlers about our South Bronx early childhood systems. This focus group will look at family experiences with social service agencies, pediatricians, daycares, and other local providers. Parents can RSVP with Lara Kyriakou (lara@risingtogether.org) and the Spanish language flyer can be found here.

SBRT Parent Focus Group
Wednesday, August 21st | 5:30 pm
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd

Next Month is Attendance Awareness Month. Count Us In!

Addressing chronic absence is a key component of improving graduation rates, increasing academic achievement and giving young people the best chance at success in their adult life. Join the Attendance Awareness Campaign and make a difference in your community.

To learn more about how you can join SBRT’s effort to improve student attendance in Bronx Community District 3, contact School-Age Network Manager Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org).

Enroll in a Preschool Programs at a Local South Bronx CBO

Bronx Community District 3 has great early childhood programs! If your family is still looking for a preschool, there is still time to enroll at many local community-based organizations. Go to the NYC Department of Education’s MySchools Directory and select 3-K or Pre-K. In the “Type” field, pick “NYC Early Education Centers” to see the CBO preschool programs in our local area. Also try the My Bronx Impact platform to find preschools and other resources in your neighborhood. If you are a family or provider with questions, please contact SBRT’s Director, Michael Partis at michael@risingtogether.org

Join the Team!

Visit the “Careers” section of our website to see the latest openings on our Backbone Team.

SBRT’S JULY NEWSLETTER

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Dear Partners,

In this month’s newsletter, you will find highlights from our Early Years and School-Age Roundtables and details on upcoming events.

Early Learning System

Our Early Years Roundtable brought together partners from education, government, and local organizations to discuss home-based child care and early literacy in Bronx CD3. Our partners at the NYPL’s Morrisania branch announced their forthcoming iPad pilot for families and the story time series in Crotona Park. We extend a special thank you to Ella Walcott for an insightful presentation on the early childhood education programs offered by the Fort George Community Center in the Claremont section of the Bronx.

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All Succeed in School

This month’s School-Age Roundtable convened our community of practice together to look at school improvement and chronic absenteeism. Scholastic shared with attendees their efforts to bring coaching and data-driven strategies to local South Bronx schools. P.S. 42 Principal Lucia Orduz presented on how her school engages families and utilizes data to prevent students from becoming chronically absent.

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SBRT Events - July 2019

Attendance Improvement Project Meeting 
Monday, July 29th | 10:00 am
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd
RSVP Here | Agenda Here

Our project meeting will continue the planning for Attendance Awareness Month this September and strategize ways to reduce chronic student absences in our local schools.

Questions? Contact Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org)


SBRT Continuous Improvement Training 
Tuesday, July 30th | 9:00 am
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd 
RSVP Here

This free training includes an introduction to rapid cycle testing, support in developing data-driven strategies, and team time for planning your own PDSAs (Plan, Do, Study, Act) and improvement projects.

Questions? Contact Michael Partis (michael@risingtogether.org

Join the Team!

Visit the “Careers” section of our website to see the latest openings on our Backbone Team.

SBRT’S UPCOMING EVENTS

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Dear Partners,

Thank you to everyone that participated in our Early Years and School Age Roundtables this month. Collaboration and community-led solutions is how SBRT strives to improve outcomes for South Bronx families and students. We look forward to seeing you at one of our upcoming events this summer.


Early Childhood Literacy Project Meeting
Monday, July 22nd | 10:00 am
Conference Call
RSVP Here

This project meeting is a planning session for Literacy Dinner: a pilot to increase preschool children’s literacy through family engagement, health and wellness, and socio-emotional learning.

Questions? Contact Michael Partis (michael@risingtogether.org)


Attendance Improvement Project Meeting
Monday, July 29th | 10:00 am
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd
RSVP Here

At this meeting, we will continue planning for September's Attendance Awareness Month campaign and strategize ways to reduce chronic absenteeism among students in our local schools.

Questions? Contact Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org)


SBRT Continuous Improvement Training
Tuesday, July 30th | 9:00 am
Bronx Family Center | 1515 Southern Blvd
RSVP Here

This free training includes an introduction to rapid cycle testing, support in developing data-driven strategies, and team time for planning your own PDSAs (Plan, Do, Study, Act) and improvement projects.

Questions? Contact Michael Partis (michael@risingtogether.org

SBRT’S EARLY YEARS ROUNDTABLE

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Dear Partners,

Join us next week at our Early Years Roundtable!

Early Years Roundtable
Monday, July 15th | 3:00 pm
Children’s Aid | 1515 Southern Blvd.
RSVP Here

Discussion topics include findings from SBRT's home-based childcare provider focus groups and the impact of the DOE's Birth to Five RFP on community-based providers.

We are excited to have the Fort George Community Enrichment Center as a guest presenter on local early childhood education in the Claremont section of the Bronx. You will also hear from the NYPL Morrisania branch about their exciting summer 2019 events and initiatives. 

Note: If you are taking public transportation, please plan for extra travel time. Uptown 2 and 5 trains will be running express from 149th Street to 180th Street.

SBRT’S SCHOOL-AGE ROUNDTABLE

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Dear Partners,

We are looking forward to the seeing you all at our School-Age Roundtable tomorrow. Our guest speaker will be Principal Lucia Orduz. There will be a special presentation and breakfast at 9:30 am from Scholastic on their educational resources and newest campaign.

School-Age Roundtable
Wednesday, July 10th | 10:00 am
Children’s Aid | 958 E. 176th St.
RSVP Here

Strong schools are an important component to spreading academic success in our South Bronx neighborhoods. SBRT’s school partnerships emphasize how a collective impact approach can drive better educational outcomes for all students in Bronx Community District 3. We are excited to bring school leaders together with stakeholders to collaborate for results!

Join us tomorrow to hear more about the work of local schools and to learn more about how you can join our campaign for educational success.

All Succeed In School

Luis Torres is the Principal of C.S. 55, a member of SBRT’s Leadership Council, and a passionate advocate for  educational equity . Read below to learn more about his approach to improving outcomes for South Bronx students and families.

Luis Torres is the Principal of C.S. 55, a member of SBRT’s Leadership Council, and a passionate advocate for educational equity. Read below to learn more about his approach to improving outcomes for South Bronx students and families.

1. What do you attribute to your success?

I attribute my vision and our success to understanding what I call the “Fifth Priority.” For many families, food, shelter, safety, and health come before education. As a principal, I have been able to create a school that works to address these four basic needs so that families can ensure their children are able to attend school.

2. What support do you need from the local community to have greater outcomes?

In order to better serve my community, we need equal investment in the community. The standards outside the school need to match the standards within the school. For a long time people believed the school would fix the ailments of the community. The reality is that we must invest in the school and the community equally.

3. How do you use data for attendance improvement efforts? 

All of our children who have issues with attendance are assigned a “success mentor.” This mentor uses the data to regularly check in with the student and contact the parents when necessary. We also look at the data to figure out what is causing children to be absent. One year, we saw that children were mostly absent during rainy days, so we purchased umbrellas for the families. Anther year, parents were complaining that they were late because they overslept, so we purchased alarm clocks. 

SBRT’S JUNE NEWSLETTER

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Dear Partners,

This month's newsletter features updates from our early childhood work, as well as recaps from our projects in early childhood literacy and school attendance. We are also excited to bring you lessons from one of our school partners on strategies for improving academic outcomes in our communities. Read more to learn how Principal Lucia Orduz-Castilo uses data and community building to help local students succeed.

Early Learning System

Recently, Lara Kyriakou (SBRT Manager) and Michael Partis (SBRT Director) were panelists at the Robin Hood Foundation's FUEL Convening. The event brought together leaders from social impact, public service, and academia to share successes and findings from the implementation of early childhood projects throughout the city. Along with other community-based organizations and collective impact initiatives, Lara and Michael shared lessons in utilizing local-level feedback to improve outreach and engagement to families with infants and toddlers.

SBRT's Early Learning System has begun our community deep-dives on childcare in Bronx Community District 3. Current activities include childcare surveys for parents and caregivers, as well as focus groups with local home-based childcare providers. To learn more about this work, we invite you to our Early Years Roundtable on July 15 where we will share initial insights. If you are interested in supporting our community-focused research efforts, please contact Lara (lara@risingtogether).

SBRT’s Director, Michael Partis speaking at Robin Hood Foundation's FUEL Convening.

SBRT’s Director, Michael Partis speaking at Robin Hood Foundation's FUEL Convening.

All Succeed in School

As the 2018-2019 school year draws to a close, SBRT will be bringing you on-the-ground insights from our school partners on how they are increasing the quality of education and working towards improving academic outcomes. For the first installment in this series, we are excited to highlight P.S. 42 and its Principal Lucia Orduz-Castillo.

1. What do you attribute to your success?

It’s a team effort. There are so many moving pieces that it takes a number of dedicated staff members to ensure forward movement. Staff has to believe in their contribution to a student’s attendance – and the impact they can make, regardless of their title in a school building.

2. How do you use data for attendance improvement efforts?

Data analysis, for example, helps us to identify students who are at-risk of becoming chronically absent. These students are then paired with a success mentor who checks in with them daily. We identify the more severe cases through data analysis as well, and attach those students to clinicians in our school. As for our preventative strategies, we use the summer months to analyze historical data to help us create universal attendance initiatives. Data will tell us, for example, school dates that are historically poorly attended, or days of the week where attendance is higher than others. Such information is essential in making necessary changes to avoid history repeating itself.

3. How do you address chronic absenteeism?

We begin by identifying the students as early as August, and sharing a personalized attendance report of the previous school year with those families in a welcome back packet. We also attach the chronically absent students to a more experienced success mentor, such as our school’s social workers. The clinicians are expected to begin to work with students as early as the second week of school. Any student who hits 10 days of absence has a letter sent home requesting a personal meeting with the Principal. At the meeting, parents receive an explanation that continued absences will result in chronic or severely chronically absent labels for their children. We also seek to understand the reason for the absences at such meetings and attempt to connect the parent with necessary resources to avoid continued absences.

4. What support would you need from the local community to have greater success?

30% of our students are those in temporary housing. Ironically, although the DOE has staff inside of neighborhood shelters, a large portion of our chronically absent students are in temporary housing. We need to ensure that staff at shelters are working in unison with a school’s attendance team. There should be daily efforts to ensure that all children living in a shelter are in school even if it means doing a morning roll call, or providing a walking bus from the shelter to the school building. It is unacceptable for school attendance not to be enforced in a shelter.

Lucia Orduz-Castillo, Principal at P.S. 42 in the Claremont section of the Bronx.

Lucia Orduz-Castillo, Principal at P.S. 42 in the Claremont section of the Bronx.

SBRT Events - July 2019

Please note that all events are open to the public. We all ask partners to spread the word, invite other stakeholders, and encourage residents and community members to join us.

Early Years Roundtable
Monday, July 15th | 3:00 pm
Children’s Aid | 1515 Southern Blvd.
RSVP Here

Read the recaps to our April Roundtable and June Early Childhood Literacy project meeting.

Questions? Contact Lara Kyriakou (lara@risingtogether.org).

School-Age Roundtable
Wednesday, July 10th | 10:00 am
Children’s Aid | 958 E. 176th St.
RSVP Here

Read the recaps to our April Roundtable and June School Attendance project meeting.

Questions? Contact Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org).

SBRT Continuous Improvement Training
Tuesday, July 30th | 10:00 am
Location TBA
RSVP Here

Questions? Contact Michael Partis (michael@risingtogether.org).


Join the Team!

Visit the “Careers” section of our website to see our latest openings.

SBRT UPDATES - JOBS AND EVENTS

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Dear Partners,

Here are some updates from the SBRT network.

School Attendance Improvement Meeting

Join us this Thursday, June 20th at 10 am! We will convene local stakeholders in education to discuss improving student attendance and decreasing chronic absenteeism in Bronx CD3. Our work is in preparation for Attendance Awareness Month this September.

Call In #: 1 505-445-7918‬ 

PIN: ‪943 306 814‬#

We Are Hiring!

Our team is expanding! Please see our vacant positions below in Early Childhood and School Readiness.

SBRT Events - July 2019

Please note that all events are open to the public. We ask partners to spread the word, invite other stakeholders, and encourage residents and community members to join us.

Early Years Roundtable
Monday, July 15th | 3:00 pm
Children’s Aid | 1515 Southern Blvd.
RSVP Here

Questions? Contact Lara Kyriakou (lara@risingtogether.org)

School Age Roundtable
Wednesday, July 10th | 10:00 am
Children’s Aid | 958 E. 176th St.
RSVP Here

Questions? Contact Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org)

SBRT Continuous Improvement Training
Tuesday, July 30th | 10:00 am
Location TBA
RSVP Here

Questions? Contact Michael Partis (michael@risingtogether.org)

SBRT’S MAY NEWSLETTER

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Dear Partners,

We are excited to share with you the latest from our network. In this month's newsletter, you will learn more about our project groups and upcoming SBRT events.

Project Groups Are Underway!

Our Home-Based Child Care project group continues to work on strategies for improving quality of care. A special thank you to the NYC Children's Cabinet for their presentation on new ways to share input on policy.

Additionally, the School Attendance project meeting focused on the partnerships and stakeholders needed for reducing chronic absenteeism in our local schools. We thank our attendees for committing to actions that help our community prepare for Attendance Awareness Month in September!

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Events in the SBRT Network

Beyond '77, our StriveTogether Leadership team, held two convenings this month to continue our push towards equitable results in South Bronx schools. The group facilitated a community conversation to identify the key factors impacting neighborhood-level reading and literacy. We also met with the Principals, Community School Directors, and other leaders from several of our partner schools to discuss end of the school year data-driven strategies.

A special thank you to the My Brother's Keeper's Bronx and DOE staff for providing our local schools with a great celebration of reading and literacy earlier this month. We also thank A Short Bronx DocumentaryHostos College's Office of Career Services, and StriveHigher for providing free headshots, LinkedIn workshops, and mock job interviews to the community.

A major thank you to the great staff and leaders at C.S. 61, Metropolitan High School, and P.S. 55 for hosting our SBRT network events!

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Network News

We are looking to hold focus groups with home-based childcare providers in the middle of June. Food, childcare, and special incentives will be provided to all participants. Contact Lara Kyriakou (lara@risingtogether.org) for more information. If you are interested, please RSVP here.

The Early Grades Reading project group is currently looking for more members. Please contact Kendall Lewis (kendall@risingtogether.org) to learn about the work ahead and upcoming meetings. Click here for a recap of our most recent meeting.

Our team is expanding! Please see our vacant positions below in the SBRT Early Learning System and School Readiness.


Save The Date

Early Childhood Literacy Project Group
Thursday, June 13th | 10:00 am
Children’s Aid | 1515 Southern Blvd. 
RSVP Here

School Age Network Roundtable
Wednesday, July 10th | 10:00 am
Children’s Aid | 976 E. 176th St. 
RSVP Here