YPIE Launches New Middle School Program
Published in Yonkers Rising, March 16, 2012.
Yonkers Partners in Education (YPIE) launched a new program aimed at getting the 27,000 students in the Yonkers Public Schools (YPS) to learn and achieve.
After establishing successful High School College & Career Learning Centers in six Yonkers high schools (Roosevelt/Early College High School, Gorton, Riverside, Lincoln, Saunders Trades and Technical High Schooland Yonkers Middle/High School) YPIE introduced its new middle school program, “Getting Prepared for Success” (GPS) at the Foxfire School this week.
The GPS Program is designed to prepare 7th and 8th grade students in the YPS for success in high school and to introduce students, early on, to college and career opportunities. With funding from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation and the Lanza Family Foundation, this technology driven, interactive program is being piloted with 275 7th graders in four YPSD middle schools (FoxfireSchool,PaideiaSchool15, Palisade Preparatory School andScholasticAcademy) and is part of YPIE’s district-wide program to increase the number of students in the YPS who graduate from high school and complete a postsecondary program.
YPIE’s Middle School Coordinator Julie Arias and Director of Programs Ellen Levy created the curriculum, which uses Naviance, a hi-tech, book-free online tool that helps students search careers and colleges and helps them plan for a successful future.
Foxfire Principal Don Solimene said that GPS “has been exiting for our students, and gives them a positive impact to get prepared for high school and beyond. Kids are excited to come and learn. We have laptops to make it a multimedia environment.”
Arias, who teaches the 10-session program at Foxfire, said, “This is meaningful for me because I didn’t have the support in the 7th grade. My passion is to help these kids.”
Three Foxfire students — Ann Marie Rivera, Ceaser Colon and Katherine Zayas — gave a demonstration of what they have learned to Superintendent Bernard Pierorazio and YPIE members.
“If I dedicate myself to my studies, I can get the career that I want,” saidColon.
YPIE Executive Director Wendy Nadel thanked GPS’s sponsors, JP Morgan Chase and the Lanza Foundation, and said, “This new and robust program is another great part of YPIE’s programming.”
Pierorazio thanked Nadel and YPIE for “their commitment to do more and make things better for our students.” Pierorazio added that, with YPIE’s high school college centers, college scholarships given to YPS students has risen from $13 million in 2005 to $51 million in 2011.
Speakers at the launch included Nadel, Arias, Pierorazio and Solimene. In addition, students from the Foxfire Schol gave brief online demonstrations of the interactive program components.
YPIE is a 501(c)(3) organization that provides privately funded programs in the YPS to improve academic achievement, guide students as they prepare for and apply to and college and vocational programs and track post-secondary outcomes.
For more information on YPIE and its various programs, contact Nadel at 914-377-4882 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit YPIE.org.