New York State Education Department_ Knowledge_ Skill_ Opportunity
News and Notes
Dear Colleagues,

I hope you are enjoying the summer.  In this edition of News and Notes, I provide information about the following:
I also want to encourage you to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn this summer to get ideas for fun and educational summertime activities for kids in an effort to prevent the "Summer Slide." It is estimated that school summer breaks will cause the average student to lose up to one month of instruction, with disadvantaged students being disproportionately affected. As part of our #StopSummerSlide campaign, we are sharing tips, resources, activities, and events, highlighting daily themes like "Math Monday," "Where in the World Wednesday," and "Thinker Thursday." If you don't already, be sure to follow us for these tips and ideas and for our latest news.


MaryEllen Elia
6July Board of Regents Meeting

State Education Building
At the July Board of Regents meeting this week, NYSED staff provided updates on various initiatives, including: civic readiness; school climate; Social Emotional Learning; mental health and health education; a Student Placement Information System to provide services more proactively for students with disabilities; the Charter School Performance Framework; the  CDOS Commencement Credential; the superintendent determination safety net option for students with disabilities to earn a local diploma; the  Regents-HSE Exam Pathway for high school equivalency diplomas; the  P-12 Learning Standards for the Arts; and strategies to provide opportunities for high quality candidates to enter the education profession, particularly in hard-to-staff content areas.
4My Brother's Keeper Online Town Hall Meeting on July 23

On Monday, July 23, Regent Lester W. Young, Jr. will deliver a presentation during an online My Brother's Keeper Alliance Town Hall meeting, which will feature a conversation with Grammy-award winning artist, Common. Regent Young and Dr. Anael Alston, Assistant Commissioner for the New York State Education Department's Office of Access, Equity, and Community Engagement Services, will discuss the positive impacts the MBK initiative has made in New York.

The MBKA Town Hall will bring together more than 600 MBK Community Leaders from around the country to learn about best practices, ask questions, and connect with each other.

3Dr. Jaime Aquino Named Distinguished Educator for Rochester City School District

school building
This week, Commissioner MaryEllen Elia appointed Dr. Jaime Aquino as a Distinguished Educator to the Rochester City School District. Dr. Aquino has worked in education for more than 30 years, starting his career as a bilingual teacher in Queens. Dr. Aquino's vast experience as an educator includes serving in leadership roles in school districts in Los Angeles, Denver and Hartford, CT.
6aStudent Support and Academic Enrichment Grants

teacher looking at computer with students
NYSED announced that $28.5 million in Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants have been awarded to 38 school districts. The grants, newly authorized under Title IV of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), will help build state and local capacity to lift the academic achievement of students throughout the State.
5Understanding LGBTQ+ Identity: A Toolkit for Educators Collection

Pride banner
Professional development materials are available from PBS Learning Media to help educators address the complex and difficult issues faced by LGBTQ students. 

The " Understanding LGBTQ+ Identity: A Toolkit for Educators Collection" features short segments of video content scaffolded by additional materials (informational text, conversation guides, discussion questions, and teaching tips) to facilitate their use in professional development settings. The videos and educational resources are intended to help promote understanding, awareness, and self-esteem.
Libraries Rock_ with myOn
Summer Reading at New York Libraries is a free, annual program that gives children the opportunity to access the vast resources of New York's public libraries to support summer reading. This year's summer reading program slogan is "Libraries Rock!" Children and teens participating in the program receive book recommendations and engage in creative and fun educational activities at their local libraries. Together, we can keep students reading and learning all summer long and help prevent summer slide.

This year, NYSED is partnering with myOn to bring digital books to children via unlimited access to the myOn digital library at school and at their local public library. The myOn library has a collection of over 6,000 fiction and nonfiction e-books geared toward children from birth to 8th grade, many with recorded audio and other useful features. The NYSED Summer Reading pilot partnership with myOn will run through September. Be sure to check it out!
1aFree Summer Meals

Free summer meals
Free meals are available this summer for children and teens across New York at more than 3,000 Summer Food Service Program sites. Each day, approximately 400,000 free meals are served to children.

Use the interactive USDA online map to find a service site near you.
7New York State Summer School of the Arts

student dancers
Over 400 students in grades 8-12 are enrolled in the 2018 New York State Summer School of the Arts (NYSSSA) where they are studying with some of the world's foremost artists in the visual and performing arts. NYSSSA is composed of seven component schools that will be held throughout the summer: Theatre, Ballet, Modern Dance, Orchestral Studies, Choral Studies, Visual Arts, and Media Arts. Each program culminates in a final public performance or exhibition that is free and open to the public.
The New York State Museum recently announced that an 18th-century Native American tomahawk gifted to Cornplanter, the respected Seneca leader, by President George Washington in 1792 has been returned to the Museum's collections and is on exhibit in the Museum's main lobby July 17 through December 30.

Pipe tomahawks were significant objects of intercultural exchange in the 18th century and could be used as smoking pipes; smoking was a common ceremonial practice between parties after reaching an agreement. The meetings between Washington and Cornplanter in the 1790s eventually led to the Treaty of Canandaigua (1794), which established peace between the sovereign nations of the U.S. and the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy. For nearly 70 years this tomahawk was in the hands of private collectors, after being stolen from the Museum between 1947 and 1950. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous collector, the pipe tomahawk was returned to the Museum's collections in June 2018.