34 THE QUEENS COURIER • KIDS & EDUCATION • NOVEMBER 29, 2018 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
kids & education
Photos: Carlotta Mohamed/THE COURIER
Fresh Meadows school celebrates Blue Ribbon award
BY CARLOTTA MOHAMED
M.S. 216 in Fresh Meadows recently
celebrated the coveted distinction of being
named National Blue Ribbon School from
the U.S. Department of Education.
On Nov. 19, students, parents, teachers
and faculty members fi lled the school
auditorium — located at 64-20 175th
St. — as the New York City Police
Department Jazz Band and the George
J. Ryan Cheerleaders entertained guests.
M.S. 216 is the only middle school in
New York City to achieve the National Blue
Ribbon Award in October for its academic
performance or progress in closing achievement
gaps within student subgroups, according
to the U.S. Department of Education.
Principal Dr. Reginald Landeau Jr.
thanked local elected leaders, the New York
Department of Education Leadership,
Council of School Administrators and
District 26 School leaders before unveiling
the award received at a ceremony in
“Th is is a community of love and without
the love we don’t achieve high rates,”
said Landeau. “If students aren’t happy
they don’t achieve, and if my staff isn’t
happy they’re not able to transmit that to
students, and if the student’s aren’t happy
they don’t do well and that doesn’t lead to
Landeau added, “We have a quality
school and we deliver a quality product.”
Julietta Malayev, an 8th grader from
the Class of 2019, said George A. Ryan is
a phenomenal school that helps students
learn and grow to become gendered oriented
members of society.
“In our years at this school, Ryan has
continued to open the doors to so many
diverse opportunities to help us explore
the real world from clubs, teams, to academic
standards. Ryan has helped to
build such an amazing environment creating
an atmosphere of leadership, comfort
and safety,” said Malayev.
Graduates from the class of 2018 shared
their experience of participating in extracurricular
activities at the school.
“One of my personal favorites fundraisers
we organized at Ryan was Pennies for
Patients,” said Gabriella Khaldarov, who
was a part of Project BOOST (Building
Options and Opportunities for Students).
“My involvement in Project Boost helped
me meet new people and open up my eyes
and heart to the larger community outside
of the school.”
Thirandi Dandeniya touched on
her engagement in the GEMMS Club
(Girl Empowerment Movement in
Mathematics), which promotes academic
achievement and engagement for young
ladies in Mathematics and Science.
“GEMMS helped me meet many
incredible women who have become my
role models and helped me gain confi -
dence,” said Dandeniya. “Because of clubs
such as this one, many of us were able
to fi nd ourselves and build meaningful
connections surrounding Math and self
Assemblywoman Nily Rozic presented
a proclamation to Landeau and the school
for its achievement.
“I’d like to thank Dr. Landeau for completely
transforming this building, school,
but this entire community as well,” said
Rozic. “We are so honored and grateful
for you to be such a critical piece to all of
this. I know that I join my colleagues in
government in saying that, and we want
to support you, your administration, and
this entire school however we can.”
Dahlia Chowdhury, PTA president,
said M.S. 216 has taught her kids how to
set up and achieve goals in life.
“If you wanted to describe the George
A. Ryan Middle School, there’s only word
that comes in my mind — family. My kids
are so proud of being a part of the Ryan
family,” said Chowdhury.
Members of the M.S. 216 school community celebrated their National Blue Ribbon designation on Nov. 19.