The PROSE Newsletter: May 2016 Issue
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Volume 2 | Issue 9 | May 2016

PROSE End-of-Year Showcase a Success!

The PROSE Panel is celebrating the success of the PROSE Pathways End-of-Year Showcase.  On Tuesday, May 24th, six PROSE schools graciously presented their PROSE innovations to an audience of their peers and instructional political figures.  Michael Mulgrew, UFT President; Randi Weingarten, AFT President; Chancellor Carmen Farina; and Regents Betty A. Rosa and Kathleen M. Cashin inspired attendees to continue seeking innovation as they touted the work of: Highbridge Green and Brooklyn Generation Schools who presented on Expanded Learning TimeP.S. 071 Forest who presented on Peer Feedback and Inter-Visitation Models, P.S. 146 who presented on Increased Diversity, School of Integrated Learning, who presented on
Programming Innovations for Flexible Student Groupings, and International High School at LaGuardia Community College who presented on Distributed Leadership Structures.  The evening was an official launch of the PROSE Pathways program that encourages schools, who are not yet PROSE, to learn with and from one of the six aforementioned schools in any or all of the five flexibility areas.  The purpose of PROSE Pathways is to allow potential schools to incorporate some of these innovations into existing structures and build a stronger PROSE application for the 2017-2018 school year. The PROSE Panel will like to extend a huge thank you to all of the presenting keynote speakers, 
all the featured and participating schools, and all PROSE supporters within the DOE, UFT, and CSA.

Three Tales of Increased Diversity!

In the March 2016 PROSE Periodicals, we announced that the opening of the PROSE mini-grant that will award schools up to $5000 to support the plans for increased diversity in their student enrollment.  As part of this mini-grant, schools were asked to define what diversity means to them.  This school spotlight highlights three approaches to diversity.

Math and Science Exploratory School
At the Math and Science Exploratory School, we emphasize social-emotional learning alongside high academic standards. We believe in the explicit nurturing of curiosity, empathy, perspective-taking, and positive human interaction. It follows logically, then, that a diverse community should underlie those teachings, and make us richer. Our diversity is broad and inclusive: Our ICT classes, including our ASD Nest program, serve students with a range of disabilities; our children represent all different styles, interests, and family histories; and, since the founding of the school, our students have run the gamut of socio-economic, racial, ethnic, language, and neighborhood backgrounds. Similarly, District 15 overall holds all of these diversities. As a community school, we expect to be, as much as possible, a mirror of the district. In measuring our school’s diversity, we look at the disparities between our school population and the district’s population. As those disparities grow, we note a dwindling in our school’s diversity.

The Bard High School Earl College
The Bard High School Early Colleges (BHSECs) have long been committed to diversity and specifically to reflecting the populations of the cities in which they operate. We look at multiple forms of diversity, including income,
race/ethnicity, geography, and middle school type, among others,and aim to enroll a student body that is unified in its interest and commitment to early college education and the liberal arts and is also diverse in terms of students’ backgrounds. We believe this diversity enriches the classroom and overall student experience. We have succeeded in enrolling diverse student bodies at our campuses in New York City, as measured by the range of economic and racial/ethnic backgrounds of our students; we hope to build on this track record and increase our diversity, particularly by increasing the percentage of students from low-income backgrounds and from backgrounds underrepresented in higher education and among college degree holders.

Harvest Collegiate High School:
At Harvest Collegiate High School we define diversity in a myriad of ways ranging from academic readiness, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, and religious backgrounds, ability and gender classifications, and socioeconomic standing. We view our students’ unique lived experiences as an asset that contributes to school culture and academic discourse. We strive to create an inclusive, welcoming environment in which students can be who they truly want to be free from judgment or harassment. An informal measure of this inclusivity is the number of LGBT students who feel comfortable sharing and expressing their identities with classmates and teachers. Our positive school environment earned us a “UFT Team High School Award” in 2016 and highest ratings from students, parents and faculty on DOE survey measures of “Cultural Awareness,” “Inclusive Classroom Instruction,” and “School Commitment.” There is no typical Harvest student just like there is no typical New Yorker. We want the student body to reflect the diversity of NYC. 
 June 14 - PROSE End-of-Year Party: Come and exercise your flexibility on the dance floor!!!! The PROSE panel invites all PROSE schools to come to the end-of-year party on Tuesday, June 14th from 4 PM - 9 PM at 52 Broadway. This is not a lecture! This is not a meeting! This is about food, fun, friends and music by a live DJ.  Food and drinks will be served.   Please bring all interested teachers. Click Here to Party!!!
DOE Session Time Guide:
 All schools, including PROSE schools, must submit their session times into the DOE Session Times system by Tuesday, June 7th. The PROSE team has developed this Session Time guide for submitting your session times to ensure they are reviewed and approved quickly. If in this process your community determines that it is necessary to hold an additional PROSE vote before finalizing your session times, please reach out to the PROSE Panel. Draft ballots must be received ASAP so that they can be reviewed and approved prior to the deadline.

Answers to many of the Frequently Asked Questions from PROSE schools have been posted on the PROSE Knowledge Base.

Holding Additional PROSE Votes:
As a reminder, PROSE schools may petition the PROSE Panel in order to conduct votes to implement additional flexibilities. If your community is interested at any time in working with the PROSE Panel to conduct additional PROSE votes, please send a joint email from the principal and chapter leader to the PROSE Panel describing your request and the Panel will discuss and reply to you with next steps. Cohort 1 and 2 schools who are interested in but have not yet held a vote to implement additional flexibility for the 2016-2017 school year should submit requests to the PROSE Panel as soon as possible.  The PROSE panel will create a ballot for each school on a case-by-case basis.  Schools are asked to review the ballots immediately and send back to the panel with any amendments for finalization.  Schools cannot conduct a PROSE vote without receiving a finalized PDF ballot from the panel.
PROSE school student demographics continue to remain fairly consistent with those of Non-PROSE schools during the 2015-2016 school year.
"I think I'm particularly proud of the PROSE [schools] that really undertook the whole issue of diversity."
~ Chancellor Carmen Fariña
Copyright © 2016 Office of School Design & Charter Partnerships, PROSE, All rights reserved.

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