Today, Borough President James Oddo announced that five Staten Island schools will be participating in a City Council grant which builds a powerful advisory program and school culture framework through the Crew initiative.
A few weeks ago, after the Borough President's Education Team of Rose Kerr and Laura Timoney visited Marsh Ave Expeditionary Learning School (MAELS) where they observed live Crew periods in three different classrooms, schools across Staten Island were encouraged to consider implementing Crew in their schools. With them on that visit were principals from I.S. 2, I.S. 27, and I.S. 61.
Crew is a signature advisory program, in each NYC Outward Bound School, which encourages academic and social-emotional growth and a school-wide mindset that leads to more vibrant and authentic communities. NYC Outward Bound Schools is a network that works in partnership with the Department of Education to bring the Crew initiative to life in secondary schools around the city. This visit to MAELS marks a continuing effort to engage our borough in the free initiative, and encourages principals to consider this option, especially as students heal and regroup from the pandemic.
"The principals of the visiting schools saw firsthand the positive force Crew is in a school. It was our hope at that time that more principals take that leap and see how Crew can truly enhance the opportunities already given at their schools," said BP Oddo. "Based on data collected, we have seen that Crew offers a social-emotional lifeline for students during an incredibly challenging and isolating year."
Good news: I.S. 2, I.S. 27, and I.S. 61, The Eagle Academy for Young Men, and Pathways to Graduation have all committed to partnering with Outward Bound in the Crew initiative.
The program is free to the participating school. Each school will identify a staff member to receive coaching from NYC Outward Bound Schools and lead implementation of the Crew program at their school. NYC Outward Bound Schools will provide this "Crew Guide" with a stipend to compensate for their time. Each school will also create a space for critical academic and social-emotional growth and gain the tools to help students move forward together post-pandemic and join a collective of like-minded schools that will work together over the next two years to determine how best to leverage Crew to build belonging in schools. Professional development, "Crew 101," will begin in the next few months.