ESI Update – Week of September 23rd



ESI Update

Week of September 23


Hello Principals and ESI Team Members! Fall is just getting started but there’s already so much under way across ESI!

In this issue you will find:

  • News and Updates: Succeeding in the City Report Release
  • Opportunities: FREE College Counseling for High School Seniors!
  • School Spotlight featuring the High School Law and Public Service
  • Resources: Articles and web resources
  • Shout Outs: Queens Vocational and Technical High School

News and Updates

*This feature is intended to keep you up-to-date on what’s happening in ESI. 


Succeeding in the City Report Release

Where: The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (515 Malcolm X Boulevard and 135th Street)

When: Monday, September 30th

Time: 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM

If you have not already done so, please register to attend the release of the nation’s most comprehensive study of factors that lead to high school success and college readiness among Black and Latino men in your schools. Chancellor Walcott will be present as well as University of Pennsylvania Professor Shaun R. Harper. We will also hear a message from U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan.

We are inviting up to five (5) people per school: Principal, ESI Point Person, Key Stakeholders, as well as young men who were interviewed for the study at your school (All attendees should register)

We will gather at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (515 Malcolm X Boulevard and 135th Street), 4:00pm – 7:00pm.

Please register HERE.

ESI Budget/Operations Training Webinar

When: Friday, September 27th

Time: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM

On September 4th, the ESI Team hosted a budget training to help deepen understanding of the finance and contracting policies and procedures associated with administering the ESI grant. A clear understanding of these policies and procedures will lead to expedient transactions throughout the year and will allow programming to run smoothly. As a result of feedback from that training, a live webinar will be held Friday, September 27th from 12:00 – 1:00. APOs, Business Managers, Purchasing Secretaries and/or any other school-based staff members charged with the oversight of the ESI budget are encouraged to tune in and participate in this webinar. Click here to register.

Extension: Scopes of Work Plans Due September 27

The deadline for submitting Scopes of Work Plans has been extended to September 27. Please submit your school’s Scopes of Work document to Charisse Taylor if your school has not already done so. Copies of the documents are available here. More information about the expenses and payments process is located here. For more additional questions or concerns, please contact Charisse Taylor at or (212) 356-3759.

IMPORTANT BUDGET/OPERATIONS REMINDERS: Please note that invoices must be submitted at least 20 business days before the disbursement is needed. Reimbursements must be submitted within 90 days from the date of purchase.



Bottom Line: FREE College Counseling for High School Seniors

Bottom Line is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping disadvantaged students get in to college, graduate from college, and go far in life. They achieve this mission by providing low-income and first-generation students with one-on-one guidance through the application process and during college.

Through their FREE College Access program, beginning in senior year of high school, students visit their offices (downtown Brooklyn) to begin meeting with a Bottom Line counselor. The students work with the counselor and share their interests, aspirations, academic history, and family circumstances. Through a series of one-on-one meetings, Bottom Line’s full-time college counselors help each high school senior navigate the complex and intimidating college application process.

While the services Bottom Line provides differ depending on individual needs, their counselors always help students:

  • create a list of potential schools
  • write essays
  • complete applications
  • apply for financial aid
  • search for scholarships
  • resolve any problems that arise
  • select a suitable college

If you have seniors (male and female) who are looking for support through the entire application process–from researching schools and writing essays, to applying for financial aid and selecting a school–click here for more information. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Deborah at 347-889-7627.

Metamorphosis Institutes for Middle and High School Teachers

Upcoming 2-day and 4-day math workshops are available from Metamorphosis TLC. Click here for more information.

Register for College Board PSAT/NMSQT Rollout Webinar

Network and school staff are invited to attend an interactive webinar covering access to tools for PSAT/NMSQT preparation and administration. Additionally, attendees will receive strategies for engaging students, parents, and school communities in understanding the value of the PSAT/NMSQT. The webinar will take place on September 27 from 1:00–2:00 p.m. Click here to register. Participants will receive an email from Eventbrite with a link to the webinar.



School Spotlight

*This feature is intended to give you insight into what is happening in ESI schools. We hope you enjoy your “visit”!

High School for Law and Public Service 

Location: Washington Heights

Principal: Nicholas Politis

Total student enrollment: 688

Percent Latino/Latina: 84%

Percent Black: 13%

Contracted Providers 2012-2013: Morningside Center for Social Responsibility, Teaching Matters

Promising Practices: A major focus of the first implementation year has been the introduction of Culturally Responsive Educational (CRE) techniques to build institutional capacity among adults to support Black and Latino young men and change mindsets among school professionals to ensure all key staff recognize their cultural beliefs that may impact students at their school. Four providers were selected to lead workshops: the Metropolitan Center of New York University, Brotherhood/Sister Sol, the Efficacy Institute and professor Michelle Knight of Teachers College, author of College Ready: Preparing Black and Latina/o Youth for Higher Education – A Culturally Relevant Approach (Teachers College Press, 2013). Each of these providers ran workshops for school teams in the winter.

Six staff members from the High School for Law and Public Service (HSLPS) participated in the CRE workshop provided by Professor Knight. The team included a math teacher, an English teacher, a social studies teacher, a guidance counselor, and two administrators. As a result of the workshop, the team began to think about ways to infuse a CRE lens and framework into the curriculum and culture of the school. During the spring, they had an event with their staff where they discussed the pillars of ESI (building coherence among Academics, Youth Development, and School Culture leading to college and career readiness). They also discussed short term and long term goals, school initiatives, and CRE principles.

To continue this learning, the majority of the staff is meeting after school, one day a week for 4 weeks with professor Knight. These professional development opportunities will support HSLPS’ capacity to increase Black and Latino males’ college readiness and access to a range of postsecondary institutions through a culturally relevant approach. This approach will empower Black and Latino males intellectually, socially, emotionally, and politically by using their cultural background and experiences in all aspects of learning within a school environment.

To learn more about the CRE focused professional development, feel free to contact Assistant Principal Alexandra Brown at, or by phone at 212-927-1841 ext. 374.



Take a look:

“A Simple Way to Boost Minority Test Scores” –

An open education resource with online content on a variety of subject areas, including video, test prep and readings. –

Check out this resource on Compentency Based Pathways.

Have you signed up for the ESI Wiki? Make sure all ESI Design Team members at your school have access to this important resource. Email Jevon Williams at for more information.



Shout Outs

Shout out to Queens Vocational and Technical High School for winning a “High Schools That Work” Outstanding School Award!

Do you have a strategy, teacher, or program at your school that you wish to highlight? If so, send an email to for inclusion in our ESI Weekly Update.




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