NEW YORK, NY - State Senate Co-Leader Jeffrey D. Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester) and United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew announced a major $1.5 million citywide investment for New York City’s Community School Initiative on Thursday. The funding secured by the State Senate in the 2014-2015 New York State Budget will be allocated to enhance the academic, social, and community experience for city school children and their families.
“Community Schools have a profound, transformative effect in the lives of our school children and their families and I am pleased we were able to expand the initiative to new funding levels this year. These schools truly are schools for the 21st century, recognizing that the health and wellness of our students is as vital to their learning experience as educational programs,” said State Senator Jeffrey D. Klein.
"State Senator Jeff Klein has been an early and important supporter of Community Schools. He understands the value of placing much-needed health and community services where they have the most impact -- in our city schools. With Senator Klein's help we are working to spread Community Schools across the city,” said UFT President Michael Mulgrew.
The NYC Community Learning Schools Initiative is a non-profit organization that works to identify public schools in traditionally underserved neighborhoods and provide them with supplemental health, social and education services. Community Learning Schools are schools that are transformed into “hubs” through a collaboration of educators, school administrators, parents, volunteers, businesses, organizations and health services providers. Community schools already in operation offer a variety of services from school-based heath to youth development programs, tutoring and food banks. By integrating these services within an academic environment, students receive the care and comprehensive services and resources they need to succeed.
Selected schools are chosen to participate after submitting proposals to the NYC Community Learning Schools Initiative.
"Community Schools can help level the playing field for our children by making much needed medical and community services available to students and their families. We recently had a mobile vision clinic screen more than 500 children at two Brooklyn schools. More than 100 children needed some kind of eye-care follow-up, glasses in most cases. Children who arrived at school unable to see, left school that day with a pair of glasses. Access to vision care is such a simple thing, but it will have a huge impact on children's lives in school and out, said UFT Vice President Karen Alford.