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

SBRT Events - May 2019

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Dear Partners,

We have some exciting events coming up in our networks this week and throughout the month of May. Learn more below and we hope to see you soon!

Early Learning System

Join us on Tuesday May 7th for our Early Learning System Meeting! Our guest presenter will be the NYC Children’s Cabinet. Come hear the Cabinet’s proposals for children birth to 3 years old and their families.

You’ll also hear from SBRT’s Home-Based Care Project. They will be convening to learn more about the needs and interests of home-based child care in CD3, including plans for future focus groups with parents and providers.

Early Learning System Meeting - May 7th, 10 am to noon, 1515 Southern Blvd (Bronx Family Center)

South Bronx Playgroup

Our Playgroup meets every Thursday, 10:30 AM, at the Phipps Neighborhoods Family Reading Room (1591 Fulton Avenue, Bronx NY 10460). If your organization or program would like to speak or make a presentation to our parents, please contact Family Organizer Arlene Rivera (arivera@phippsny.org).

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#ReadAndRise - Reading And Literacy Project Meetings

On Thursday May 9th, our Early Childhood Literacy Project Group will meet to continue working on strategies for increasing communication and language skills for 3 and 4 year olds in Bronx CD3. RSVP here.

Early Childhood Literacy Project Group - May 9th, 10 am to noon, RSVP for conference call and host location details.

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Save the Date! Upcoming SBRT Events

Attendance Improvement Project Meeting (NEW DATE and LOCATION) – Thursday May 21st at 10 am

With the support of Bronx Community Board 3, September 2019 will be Attendance Awareness Month! Join us as we plan our community-focused, neighborhood-level campaign to encourage our students and families to choose #schooleveryday. RSVP here.

#ReadAndRise: A Community Conversation on Literacy and Reading in Bronx Community District 3 – Thursday May 16th at 3 pm

In Bronx Community District 3, 36% of our students scored proficient on the 2018 Third Grade ELA exam. More critically, only 25% of our Black and Latino boys scored at or above grade level. What are the factors that impact reading and literacy in our neighborhoods? How can the community collectively work together to strengthen literacy and reading? RSVP here to join us in this important conversation.

SBRT’S APRIL NEWSLETTER

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Dear Partners,

Spring has arrived and SBRT continues to build momentum towards local-level success in our South Bronx communities. In this month’s newsletter, you will learn more about #ReadAndRise and #SchoolEveryday - our community-driven campaigns for improving reading, literacy, and school attendance in Bronx Community District 3.

We’re Hiring!

 We are excited to announce that our team is expanding! See our new positions in the SBRT Early Learning System and School Readiness below.

South Bronx Playgroup

It was puzzle time at our recent South Bronx Playgroup! Please spread the word and encourage any families you know to join us. Our Playgroup meets every Thursday at 10:30 AM - Phipps Neighborhoods Family Reading Room (1591 Fulton Avenue, Bronx NY 10460). If your organization or program would like to speak or make a presentation to our parents, please contact Family Organizer Arlene Rivera (arivera@phippsny.org).

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Partnering in Schools – Kinvolved and SBRT

We are excited to announce our partnership with Kinvolved to improve student attendance at SBRT partner schools. Four schools –  P.S. 42, Samara Community School, M.S. 301, and Metropolitan High School – will utilize KiNVO for strategic communication and engagement with parents and families. Thank you to Alexandra Meis, Kinvolved CPO and Co-Founder, for facilitating an excellent training and PD with our schools!

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Save the Date! Upcoming SBRT Events

Attendance Improvement Project Meeting – Wednesday May 8th at 10 am

With the support of Bronx Community Board 3, September 2019 will be Attendance Awareness Month! Join us as we plan our community-focused, neighborhood-level campaign to encourage our students and families to choose #schooleveryday. RSVP here.

#ReadAndRise: A Community Conversation on Literacy and Reading in Bronx Community District 3 – Thursday May 16th at 3 pm

In Bronx Community District 3, 36% of our students scored proficient on the 2018 Third Grade ELA exam. More critically, only 25% of our Black and Latino boys scored at or above grade level. What are the factors that impact reading and literacy in our neighborhoods? How can the community collectively work together to strengthen literacy and reading? RSVP here to join us in this important conversation.

Workforce Readiness Event – Saturday May 18th at 2 pm

In partnership with 1.5 Million Books, Phipps Neighborhoods, and Metropolitan High School, join us for job interview coaching, resumes review, and how-to workshops for LinkedIn and other employment platforms. Attendees can also have their headshot taken on site by a professional photographer. All activities and programs are free! RSVP here to join us.

Recaps – April Events in the SBRT Network 

Thank you to everyone who joined us at our April Roundtables! Click here for recaps and to learn more, contact our network managers – Lara, Early Years (lara@risingtogether.org) and Kendall, School Age (kendall@risingtogether.org).

You can also fill out our general interest forms – Early Years and School Age

Our Early Childhood Literacy Committee is working on strategies for increasing communication and language skills for 3 and 4 year olds in Bronx CD3. Check out some of the highlights from our strategy meeting earlier this month. RSVP for our next meeting. If you want to learn more, contact Michael (michael@risingtogether.org).

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We had a great time at the Phipps Neighborhoods Financial Literacy Forum. There were great panel sessions on rebuilding your credit, strategies for investments, and local economic success stories! Partners included Mastercard, Spring Bank, Mocadfi, DOE’s PreK for All, and ThriveNYC.

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Beyond ’77, our Accelerator Fund Leadership Team, continued its national training on equitable results last month. With coaching from StriveTogether, our group spent two days focused on one goal: gaining the skills needed to move from talk to action. Check out the team putting Results-Based Facilitation and Continuous Improvement into action!

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Thank You!

C.S. 61 has a new piano! A special thank you to Louise Scirbner, Gary Axelbank (publisher of thisistheBronX), Sue Fishman and the Bronx Arts EnsembleTeddy’s Cars, and Dr. Mark Naison for their donations and contributions!

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SBRT’S SCHOOL-AGE NETWORK ROUNDTABLE!

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Dear Partners,

Please join us for our next School-Age Network Roundtable this Wednesday, April 10th, from 4-6 pm at the Children’s Aid Bronx Family Center - 1515 Southern Blvd. This is our quarterly convening of providers, parents, and community members interested in issues regarding K-12 students and their families.

The event is open to the public! Please RSVP here. For any questions, please email Kendall Lewis.

School-Age Network Roundtable
Wednesday, April 10th | 4:00-6:00 PM
Children’s Aid | 1515 Southern Blvd.
RSVP Here

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