40 THE QUEENS COURIER • KIDS & EDUCATION • DECEMBER 26, 2019 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
kids & education
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$13 million in funding to go toward helping
New York City's many multilingual learners
Th e Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
is giving a $13 million grant to New York
City for will be used to better equip middle
school teachers to instruct multilingual
learners, Schools Chancellor Richard
Carranza announced Wednesday at I.S. 96
“Every year there is a diverse range of
students in our classrooms and every year
it is our responsibility to understand who
is in that classroom and to look and act
on the data that is generated so we can
continue to evolve our practices,” said
Th e funds will go towards providing
teachers with instructional coaching from
the DOE and the creation of “instructional
networks” in 45 middle schools across
the city over the next fi ve years. It will
build on improvements DOE previously
made to its multilingual learner program
through a 2016 Gates Foundation grant
benefi tting 17 South Brooklyn schools,
including I.S. 96.
“When I fi rst came in, I had never been
in such a diverse classroom before,” said
John Herron, a 6th and 8th grade social
studies teacher at I.S. 96. Among his fellow
students, there were 15 languages
being spoken in one class.
Th rough the program, Herron and others
were able to learn how to get students
from “point A to point B.” But it is unclear as what techniques he
was equipped with to help such a diverse
group of students better understand their
lessons as they tried to learn English.
Th e schools that received help from the
initial grant saw an 86 percent increase in
the number of multilingual learners scoring
Profi cient or Advanced on the New
York State ELA exam, according to the
DOE. Multilingual learners test out of ESL
services once they score a 3 or a 4 on the
state ELA exam.
“Th is is really a colleague to colleague,
peer to peer instructional coaching,” said
Th e grant will allow for teachers to
visit colleagues classrooms and to observe
teaching practices. Th e fi rst $10 million of
the grant will go towards the coaching for
teachers via the Fund for Public Schools
and $2 million will given to the schools
directly to use as they see fi t. Some of the
funds will go towards hiring coaches.
None of the 45 schools to receive help
have been identifi ed yet but according to
the DOE, 20 schools will start to receive
expanded services starting in the 2020-
2021 school year.
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Photos by Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech
Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza at P.S. 96 in Brooklyn on Dec. 11.
St. John’s Episcopal Hospital hosts annual holiday party
Courtesy of St. John’s Episcopal Hospital
CEO Jerry Walsh and Chief Medical Offi cer Donald Morris distribute gifts at St. John’s Episcopal
Hospital’s Children’s Holiday Party at the Rockaway YMCA, where kids received gifts, participated
in face painting and games, and took photos with their favorite super heroes. This year marks the
10th anniversary of the annual event.