Chancellor Fariña Highlights Expanded Summer Institute for Pre-K Teachers and Program Leaders

  • Posted: Fri Aug 14, 2015 Updated: Mon Jul 23, 2018

Over 5,500 Pre-K Teachers, Teacher Assistants, and Leaders across District Schools and NYC Early Education Centers Expected to Participate. CUNY, Fordham University, Bank Street Will Facilitate Institute with DOE and Offer Ongoing Professional Development Around One of Four Tracks. Expanded Institute Includes First-Ever Summer Institute for Pre-K Program Leaders

NEW YORK – Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña today kicked off the Department of Education’s Pre-K Summer Institute, a collaboration between the DOE, Bank Street College of Education, CUNY, and Fordham University that will provide training for over 5,500 pre-K teachers, teacher assistants, and leaders across all pre-K settings in district schools, NYC Early Education Centers, and charter schools. This is the second year of the Pre-K Summer Institute, and for the first time this year, the Summer Institute will offer dedicated training for program leaders. This year, programs will also offer differentiated supports and professional development that will continue throughout the year. 

There are four two-day institutes for teachers between August 10 and 21, two each at Brooklyn and Queens College. Last month, over 1,000 pre-K leaders were trained for the first time at the Pre-K for All Summer Institute for leaders. Teachers and leaders receive differentiated support aligned to their pre-K program’s Instructional Track. The Summer Institute is an important and meaningful step towards ensuring high-quality pre-K instruction across all pre-K settings. This September, for the first time every 4-year-old will have access to free, full-day, high-quality pre-K 

“School’s never out for New York City’s committed teachers, and I’m happy to see so many of them here to improve their craft,” said Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña. “We are grateful to Bank Street College of Education, CUNY, and Fordham University for their partnership, and I know our teachers will take what they learn into our pre-K classrooms to better meet the needs of students and families. With improved and consistent training, we are going to see better instruction – and better results – for our 4-year-olds.” 

“New York City’s Pre-K for All is a high-quality program because our teachers are high-quality,” said Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives Richard Buery. “Our children deserve the very best instruction and care, and the Department of Education’s Summer Institute is creating a valuable space for pre-K teachers to grow and prepare for a successful new school year. I want to thank all of our partners in this endeavor.” 

“With the Pre-K Summer Institute, pre-K teachers and program leaders are getting the high-quality professional development they need to continue to improve their programs. It’s exciting to partner with universities in this work, leveraging our City’s higher education resources to ensure we’re using the most state-of-the-art and research-driven teaching methods and strategies in our pre-K classrooms. As the support and training offered at the Institute continues throughout the year, Pre-K for All is going to become even stronger,” said Josh Wallack, Deputy Chancellor for Strategy and Policy. 

“It is a privilege and joy to work with pre-K leaders and teachers‎ as they prepare to serve the City's 4-year-olds,” said Sherry Cleary, Executive Director of CUNY’s Early Childhood Professional Development Institute. “4-year-old children demonstrate an avid drive to learn about everything in their environment and it takes a very special teacher to meet the‎ social, emotional, physical, and cognitive needs of each child. Leaders and teachers need grace, generosity, intelligence, tenacity, stamina, creativity, and a sense of humor. We are seeing great excitement and commitment in our training sessions. It's going to be a great year.” 

“Fordham is excited to be working with the DOE on this important initiative,” said Virginia Roach, Dean of Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education. “By specifically focusing on the Fordham strand on culturally and linguistically diverse children and families in quality Pre-K classrooms and centers, we reflect that every New York child is valued and ensure they will be ready for kindergarten and beyond.” 

“Bank Street is deeply committed to ensuring every child has access to a high quality, engaging, and supportive learning environment. We are thrilled to be partners with New York City in developing students’ effective mathematical skills through a strong child-centered curriculum and ensuring that their teachers are also well-prepared to support students’ social-emotional development,” said Shael Polakow-Suransky, President, Bank Street College of Education. 

Pre-K Educators participating in the Summer Institute will participate in professional development sessions based on which one of the four instructional tracks their program is participating in for the upcoming school year. Pre-K educators will receive ongoing training and support from both DOE and university partners throughout the year for most instructional tracks. In the upcoming school year, all Pre-K for All programs will be visited by a coach either specific to their track, and/or a DOE Instructional Coach. The tracks are: 

  • NYC Pre-K Explore: Pre-K sites that participate in the NYC Pre-K Explore track will use the Building Blocks math curriculum together with Interdisciplinary Units of Study created by the DOE’s Division of Early Childhood Education in collaboration with outside experts. Bank Street will foster teachers’ understanding and implementation of Building Blocks, a cutting-edge math curriculum designed to teach concept development and problem solving.
  • Advancing Social and Emotional Development: Through a partnership with Bank Street, teachers will learn how to better support pre-K students in developing the social-emotional skills needed to form positive relationships and adapt to change. 
  • Using Data to Inform Instruction: CUNY will work with teachers to help them identify and meet the needs of each individual student by using authentic assessment and other data points. 
  • Supporting Linguistically and Culturally Diverse Learners: Through a partnership with Fordham University, teachers will develop classroom strategies to support students and families from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

Pre-K seats are still available, and families can search for pre-K programs with availability or by calling 718-935-2067. Going forward, families who are still looking for the best fit for their child will receive a personal phone call from a DOE Enrollment Specialist, who will walk them through the available options in an effort to ensure that every family finds a free, full-day, high-quality pre-K program.

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