Strong Schools, Strong Communities

Chancellor Fariña with students

Chancellor Carmen Fariña's Remarks on Strong Schools, Strong Communities

The New York City Department of Education is committed to working collaboratively with parents, families, educators, and communities to improve student achievement and ensure that every child graduates from high school prepared for college, a career, and a future as a productive adult. 

A former teacher and school leader, Chancellor Fariña is using her experience in the classroom to bring common-sense solutions to schools.She is establishing programs to strengthen ties between schools and communities,and is giving teachers and students the support they need to reach higher standards

These programs and supports are building a system of schools centered on student learning. Along with strengthened partnerships between parents, teachers, students, school leaders, and communities, these initiatives will ensure Strong Schools, Strong Communities, so that all students succeed.

The New York City Department of education has undertaken a comprehensive study of how the new Strong Schools, Strong Communities plan will lift up our students: 

Analysis of Strong Schools, Strong Communities: A New Approach to Supporting New York City's Public Schools and All of Our Students

Directors of the Borough Field Support Centers

Chancellor Fariña announced the creation of the Office of Field Support and the directors of the seven Borough Field Support Centers, which will provide principals with streamlined, increased support, resources, and oversight. Each of the Borough Field Support Centers, or BFSCs, will provide high-quality, differentiated support in instruction, operations, and student services such as safety, health, and wellness, as well as support for English Language Learners and students with special needs. 

Learn more about the seven new Borough Field Support Center Directors here.

Initiatives for Strong Schools, Strong Communities

Framework for Great Schools

The Framework for Great Schools, is a research-driven tool to diagnose a school’s strengths and the areas that need improvement.

School Quality Snapshots and Guides

The School Quality Snapshots and Guides offer a holistic view of how a school is performing. They replace the overly simplistic progress report letter grades.

Renewal Schools

The School Renewal Program is a top-to-bottom evaluation to improve struggling schools. Renewal Schools receive supports such as transformation into a Community School, expanded learning opportunities, and increased professional development.

Streamlined School Support

Stronger superintendents, with greater supervision and oversight, and Borough Field Support Centers, with specialized services for schools, are replacing Children First Networks as part of Strong Schools, Strong Communities: A New Approach to Supporting New York City's Public Schools and All of Our Students.

School Initiatives

The launch of major initiatives such as the Learning Partners Program, Showcase Schools, and PROSE schools, encourage educators to share their good practices with other schools across the City.

Principal and Superintendent Qualifications

The qualifications for principals and superintendents are now increased. Principals are now required to have at least 7 years of full-time pedagogic experience, and superintendents must have have at least 10 years of pedagogic experience, including at least three as a principal.

Pre-K For All

High-quality, full-day pre-kindergarten expanded to more than 53,000 four-year-olds in September 2014the largest program in New York City history. This year, pre-k will expand to serve every eligible child in the five boroughs. In pre-k, students learn vocabulary development and early math skills, and grow socially.

Community Schools

Through a $52 million grant, New York City will create the most Community Schools of any school district in the country. Community Schools are schools that partner with an organization to provide wrap-around services to the local community. Schools work with their community to decide which academic, emotional, and physical services to provide. 

After-School Programs

Expanded after-school programs will provide thousands more middle school students with safe, recreational activities like dance, science, debate club, art, and more.

Programs for English Language Learners

A stand-alone, cabinet-level English Language Learners (ELL) Department now reports directly to the Chancellor. The department has brought increased translation services for parents, more training for teachers of ELLs students, 40 dual-language programs, and other services.