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De Blasio Administration Taps New Advisory Board to Help Develop New York City's Next Wave of Community Schools

July 17, 2014

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Leaders from community groups, social services, businesses and academia to hone new models for turning schools into vibrant community hubs that provide services to at-risk families

NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today kicked off the planning process for a slate of new Community Schools, with a gathering of leaders from across the city who will help the City innovate ways of delivering greater services and support to at-risk families. Joined by Deputy Mayor Richard Buery and Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña, the Mayor tasked the Community Schools Advisory Board with helping to enhance existing programs, raising the bar for community schools across the city, increasing parental involvement, and developing new community schools that reach families in need. The Advisory Board is composed of stakeholders from various sectors—foundations, business, education, research, health, and non-profit providers—all of which play a role in existing and new Community Schools.

Last month, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a $52 million grant by the New York State Department of Education, which will be managed in partnership with the United Way of New York City to develop 40 innovative Community Schools that will match comprehensive social services and learning programs at high-need public schools across the city. By reaching students with vitally important services, ranging from mental health support to homework help and family counseling, Community Schools have a proven track-record of helping at-risk children succeed in the classroom and beyond.

"This is a critical pillar of our strategy to lift up students and schools across this city. Combined with pre-K for all and expanded after-school programs, Community Schools are going to be a vital tool of reaching thousands of children at risk of falling behind. We are turning to the people who know how to make these models work best and have decades of experience serving communities across this city. We're proud to have their support and are going to ensure the practices they help develop are put into action," said Mayor Bill de Blasio.

"There are children across this city who need more than a textbook and a teacher to learn. And I've see firsthand what we can achieve when we invest in the whole child. We are bringing in some of the most experienced advocates, professionals and institutions from across the city to make sure our new Community Schools have the tools, resources and innovations to set a new gold standard in holistically educating and supporting our kids," said Deputy Mayor Richard Buery.

"At Community Schools, parent involvement and engagement happens every single day, embedded in every single factor of the school. I have seen parents in classrooms as volunteers, parents learning lessons so they can support their students inside and outside of school, and parents as partners to support each other—this directly impacts student engagement. This real collaboration between parents, teachers, principals and students is part of the vibrant DNA of Community Schools," said Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña.

Community School Advisory Board Members:



Board Member

Advocates for Children

Kim Sweet

Broome Street Academy Charter School

Principal Barbara McKeon

Brown University /Annenberg Center                      

Megan Hester

Center for Children's Initiatives

Nancy Kolben

Children's Aid Society Community School

Principal Ife Lenard

Children's Defense Fund – NY

Melanie Hartzog

Children's Health Fund/Columbia University

Karen Redlener

City Council Speaker's Office

Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito

Alliance for Quality Education

Zakiya Ansari

Columbia Presbyterian

Dr. John S. Santelli

Council of School Supervisors & Administrators

Ernest Logan

Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation

Michelle Neugebauer

DOE Community Education Council President - D17

Nicole Job

East Bronx Academy for the Future  - 12X271

Principal Sarah Scrogin

El Puente

Frances Lucerna

FoodBank NYC

Margarette Purvis

Ford Foundation

Sanjiv Rao  

Good Shepard Services

Sister Paulette LoMonaco

Harlem Children's Zone

Anne Williams-Isom

Harlem RBI

Rich Berlin

Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services

David Rivel

Lutheran Health Care

Kathy Hopkins

Montefiore Health System

Dr. David Appel

Mount Sinai Hospital

Dr. Angela Diaz

National Center for Community Schools

Jane Quinn

New Settlement

Jack Doyle

New Visions for Public Schools

Bob Hughes

New York State Cradle to Career Alliance

Vanessa Threatte

NY Regents

Lester Young

NY State Afterschool Network

Nora Niedzielski-Eichner

P.S. 5 - The Ellen Lurie School

Principal Wanda Soto

P.S. 65 - The Raymond York Elementary School

Principal Rafael Morales

Partnership for NYC

Kathryn Wylde

Phipps CDC

Dianne Morales

Robin Hood Foundation

Emary Aronson

State Assembly Speaker's Office

Speaker Sheldon Silver

State Assembly Education Committee

Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan


Nancy Zimpher

TASC/ExtendED Learning                

Lucy Friedman

The Child Center of NY

Deep Ghosh

The New School/Center for NYC Affairs

Kim Nauer

Tishman Speyer

Rob Speyer

Trinity Wall Street

Ariella Louie

Turnaround for Children

Dr. Pamela Cantor

UFT Community Schools Initiative

Karen Alford

United Parents of Highbridge

Ocynthia Williams

United Way of NYC

Sheena Wright


Jack Lund

Youth Development Institute

Sandra Escamilla-Davies

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