Letter From CCC And Advocates For Children Re: Students In Temporary Housing

Testimony & Public Comments

November 3, 2017

November 3, 2017

The Honorable Bill de Blasio
Mayor of the City of New York
City Hall
New York, NY 10007

The Honorable Carmen Fariña
Chancellor, New York City Department of Education
52 Chambers Street
New York, NY 10007

Dear Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Fariña::

On behalf of Advocates for Children of New York and Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York, we are writing to urge the City to appoint high-level leadership and expand staffing to strengthen the education of students who are homeless. High-level leadership and appropriate staffing are critical to driving and managing system-wide changes to improve attendance and educational outcomes for the growing number of students in temporary housing.

We recommend that the City:

1. Appoint a DOE Deputy Chancellor for Highly Mobile Students
2. Hire DOE Field Support Center Directors for Highly Mobile Students
3. Expand and Baseline the DOE Bridging the Gap School-Based Social Worker Program
4. Hire DOE Social Workers to Work at Shelters
5. Spearhead a Coordinated Attendance Effort
6. Integrate Education Information into the PATH Intake Process
7. Improve Access to Special Education Services
8. Enhance Efforts to Increase Access to Early Childhood Education
9. Continue to Improve Transportation
10. Target Expansion of Community Schools to Schools with Disproportionate Numbers of Students in Shelters
11. Place Children in Shelters in their Communities

We describe these recommendations in the attached document.

Over the past five years, the number of students in temporary housing in NYC schools has increased by 50 percent. Given this increase and the scope of the barriers to academic success these students face, a sustained effort with high-level leadership and an infusion of resources, including more social workers, is necessary. We would like to meet with your staff to discuss these recommendations.

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