Category Archives: Education

Queens College Marks “Kristallnacht” with Personal Stories

Hundreds gathered at Queens College on Sunday to commemorate “Kristallnacht,” or Night of Broken Glass, which was a series of coordinated attacks against Jews, Jewish-owned businesses, and synagogues in Germany and Austria in November 1938. The attacks, carried out by Nazi paramilitary officers as well as civilians, resulted in hundreds of deaths; 1,000 synagogues burned, 7,000 Jewish businesses destroyed or damaged, and at least 30,000 people arrested and sent to concentration camps, where later many would be killed as the … Continue reading

Jamaica Basketball Coach Charged with Possession of Child Porn

A Jamaica basketball coach this week was awaiting arraignment on charges of possessing child pornography after a 15-year-old boy he coached told his parents about his alleged video chats with the man, said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown. Robert Walker, 42, faces a criminal complaint charging him with use of a child in a sexual performance, first-degree disseminating indecent material to minors, possessing a sexual performance by a child and endangering the welfare of a child. According to the complaint, … Continue reading

Study Proves Area Needs Rockaway Beach Rail Line: Advocates

The defunct Rockaway Beach Rail Line could generate a half a million subway rides per day, and many residents in the communities through which the line runs favor reactivation over transforming it into a park, according to the highly anticipated findings of a Queens College study that were released this week. The student-led Department of Urban Studies analysis, “A Community Impact Study of Proposed Uses of the Rockaway Beach Branch Right of Way,” surveyed thousands of residents and researched available census … Continue reading

Twenty-Five Years Later, ‘Big Buddies’ Still Mentoring

A little more than 25 years ago, approximately 5,700 miles from Kissena Boulevard, Arty Salz was inspired to take action. The Queens College professor was on sabbatical in Jerusalem in the late 1980s, and what he absorbed in the holy city would change the lives of thousands of Big Apple families. “[I] learned about their program for children of indigent families,” said Salz, now professor emeritus in the school’s Department of Elementary Education. “When I returned to QC in 1989, … Continue reading

Free Tablets Available for Lease at Several Borough Library Branches

Google tablets are available for loan at 10 borough library branches, including Broad Channel, Forest Hills, Howard Beach, Jamaica, Rockaway Beach and Rockaway Park. Loans are free with a Queens Library card. Customers may borrow them for a month, with three possible renewals (four months total). First-time borrowers must sign a borrower’s agreement and show photo identification. Queens Library began lending customers Google tablets on their library cards in November 2013. Through the efforts of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the … Continue reading

L.I. School Computer Technician Cops to Child Porn Charge

A Queens Village man, who worked as a computer technician for a Long Island school district, last week pleaded guilty to promoting a sexual performance by a child. According to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, Ryan Ramdass, 28, “admitted that he shared very disturbing pictures and videos of children being sexually abused by way of his computer on the Internet.” A forensic search of Ramdass’ external hard drive revealed seven images and 28 videos of children being sexually abused, according to … Continue reading

Vaughn College to Install First Female President

Call her the Pioneer President. Flushing’s Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology is set this Friday to install Dr. Sharon DeVivo as its seventh president—the first female to hold the office in the history of the 82-year-old institution. DeVivo, who succeeds Dr. John Fitzpatrick and has been serving in the role of president since July 1, has been with the school since 1996, most recently as its senior vice president. According to Vaughn, during DeVivo’s 18-year tenure she has been … Continue reading

Mayor’s School Space Task Force Weighs-in on Overcrowding

Space issues such as chronic overcrowding, the use of mobile classrooms and problems with co-located schools, whereby charter and public schools occupy the same building, have long plagued schools across the city. So, in an effort to tackle these problems, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s School Space Working Group, formed earlier this year to address space issues, recently released a set of guidelines and recommendations to help make space decisions both more equitable and transparent. The group, co-chaired by Schools Chancellor … Continue reading

City Investing $150 Million in Struggling Schools

In a move that seems to further establish an educational policy philosophy that is in sharp contrast to that of the 108th mayor of the city, Mayor Bill de Blasio on Monday unveiled the School Renewal Program, a new strategy aimed at turning around the Big Apple’s most challenged public schools. Unlike his predecessor, Michael Bloomberg, who sought to cut the city’s losses by phasing out or shuttering failing institutions, de Blasio said the SRP will invest $150 million into changing … Continue reading

Beating Death of 3-Year-Old Girl Spurs Domestic Violence Bill

The death of a 3-year-old girl in a Brooklyn shelter at the hands of her stepfather has prompted one borough elected official to take legislative action. City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Glendale) announced last week that she is drafting legislation mandating domestic violence education in city shelters. The bill would require the city Department of Homeless Services to provide persons entering the shelter system information on domestic violence and violence against children. The law would mandate families to watch an educational … Continue reading

School Says Afterschool Program Slots Still Available

One of the pillars of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s first year in office has been afterschool programming for middle-school students. And according to the head of PS 207’s own afterschool program, area parents of children in grades 6 through 8 can still take advantage of de Blasio’s initiative at the Howard Beach school. “We just want to make people aware that they should enroll soon,” said Michael Taylor, director of the afterschool program at PS 207, “because we’re going to … Continue reading

Area Communities Tops in State Reading Program

More than 100 students from the communities that comprise state Senate District 15 last week received official certificates from the Senate after emerging on top in number of participants in the legislative body’s summer reading program. Before summer began, state senators reached out to district schools, offering the opportunity to enroll in the program, in conjunction with the state Library. Participating students kept an online journal to track their progress throughout the break from school. The online journal, used via … Continue reading

Loan Reforms Could Help Students Struggling With Debt

With nearly 40 million student loan borrowers holding more than $1.2 trillion in student-loan debt, federal statistics now show that student-loan debt has surpassed credit cards as the country’s third largest type of household debt. Moreover, millions of student-loan borrowers are in default, and even more are delinquent in payments. But, help may be on the way in the form of several recent efforts to reform student loans by enabling borrowers to refinance at lower interest rates, much in the … Continue reading

New Ozone Park Public School Set to Open in Sept. 2017

The city School Construction Authority indicated last week that the new public school designated to be built on an empty lot in Ozone Park is approximately 60 percent of the way through the design phase. Public School 323, a Community School District 27 institution that will serve approximately 504 students in grades Kindergarten through 5th, will be located on the south side of Albert Road between Raleigh Street and 99th Place. With construction scheduled to start in September 2015, doors … Continue reading

Christ the King Students Excel and Accelerate in Math

Christ the King High School Principal Peter Mannarino congratulates students who accelerated their mathematics education by completing a summer course in pre-calculus through Christ the King Continuing Education. The course, taught by faculty member Richard Hartman, was conducted over a six- week period and encompassed over 50 hours of instructional time. Their successful completion of the course allowed these students to progress directly from Algebra II / Trigonometry to AP Calculus. Now in its fourth year, the program has enjoyed … Continue reading