Donate to a Student Today

College and Career Readiness through Blended Learning

* Featured
Featured posts

Summer Study will Give You a Jump On the Fall

A Fall Payoff with Summer Study

Summer is usually a time for students to relax and hang with friends. But a little bit of study this summer will lead to big payoffs in the fall. All students already enrolled in JFYNet software may continue using the software all summer, and new students are invited to enroll. This video provides online options and suggestions for summer study, and information as to why, due to the Covid-19 school shutdown, summer study is more important now than ever.

Once an at-risk student himself, Jorge Santana leads his students towards success at PACE

Once an at-risk student, Jorge Santana now leads students towards success

JUNE 2020 PODCAST – This month’s podcast features Jorge Santana, the Executive Director of the PACE Career Academy Charter School in Pembroke, New Hampshire, a JFYNet partner school. In this episode, you’ll hear how Mr. Santana was an at-risk student while growing up, worked early in his career to find systemic solutions to help students connect with mentors, and how PACE Academy works with students who are considered at risk and struggle with education due to other factors in their lives. We also hear two current students at PACE Academy discuss how they have found success with the help of Mr. Santana and all the staff members at PACE.

Click here for a transcript of this podcast.


View other podcasts here.



HOW ARE WE DOING?
In our pursuit to serve up content that matters to you, we ask that you take a couple of minutes to let us know how we’re doing? Please click here to be navigated to our JFYNet Satisfaction Survey. Thank you!

Cracks in the Bedrock, The destabilizing effects of inequality

by Gary Kaplan

History doesn’t repeat itself, Mark Twain observed, but it often rhymes.

Because of our peculiar history, the current calls for redirection of police funding to social programs fall with a familiar cadence at JFYNetWorks.

We are often asked what JFY stands for. It stands for Jobs For Youth, the original name of the nonprofit organization. Jobs For Youth was founded in 1976 with a Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention grant from the US Department of Justice. Our original mission was to help high school dropouts find jobs. Low-income youth were dropping out of high school at rates rising toward 20% nationally and 40% in the cities. In the early 1970s the Nixon Administration, predating Reagan, thought the best social program was a job. And so, our history began as a juvenile justice delinquency prevention program.

Those early years focused on “job readiness training,” which included time management, professional dress, manners and speech, and interviewing skills. The program also covered job applications and resume composition, which led to tutoring in reading and writing, which blossomed into a GED alternative diploma program and eventually into one of the first alternative high schools. In Massachusetts, economic enfranchisement through education was the antidote of choice to injustice.

Through the 1980s and 90s we kept pace with the labor market by creating high-skill training programs in biotechnology, financial services, health care and environmental technology in collaboration with universities that had expertise in the fields. These programs required higher levels of academic skills, so we developed prep courses using educational software. We found self-paced computerized instruction to be effective in raising reading and math skills. When standards-based education came to K-12 in the late 1990s we adapted our methodology to the state high school curriculum. Software-based instructional support to high schools and then middle schools soon became our largest program.

The link between education and earnings was clear then and is even clearer now. As we have noted many times, an associate degree is worth $275,000 more in lifetime earnings than a high school diploma, and a bachelor’s degree raises the ante by a million. As the 2000s progressed, it became clear that the most effective way to promote economic and social justice was to focus on high school graduation and post-secondary education or training, the widest and straightest path to economic stability and social mobility. In 2009 we formally adopted the rubric “College and Career Readiness.” This new policy language of government and philanthropy accurately described what we had been doing since 2000.

Have our efforts produced results? At the micro level, yes. We provide academic support to urban schools where the gaps are widest and the needs greatest. We have raised skills and scores for thousands of young people every year for two decades. We have saved students millions of dollars in remedial college tuition. We have helped schools raise graduation rates and college enrollment rates. Our track record looks very good.

But the macro level does not look as good. The Times ran a sobering piece last week on inequality (“Quantifying The Inequity Many Face In Finance,” NYT 6.10.20). In the echo chamber of articles and books and TV specials on this subject over the last few years, this broadside reverberated jarringly. To paraphrase the lede, “We cannot quantify injustice… but we can measure the economic inequity that serves as backdrop.”

The story catalogued Black-white inequity in household income, college graduation, student loan debt and default, wages, home ownership, retirement funds and inheritance. All these gaps have widened since the 1970s. The home ownership gap is the widest in 50 years. Many other indicators could be added to the list. The Boston Globe series on race in December 2017 unearthed the most shocking: median net household worth. The number for white households in Boston was $247,500. The median net worth of African American households was $8.00. The Globe had to run a follow-up to clarify that wasn’t a typo—it really was eight dollars.

Justice can be an elusive concept. But no one can call the gap between $8 and $247,500 an equitable distribution of wealth. No one can say that 40 years of widening inequality is good for the civic health of a society. All the vehicles of social funding in the US—youth programs, jobs programs, welfare, education, even food stamps—have been decimated since Nixon’s burst of pragmatic liberalism. Police department reform alone cannot correct systemic economic injustice.

The Times article offered a blunt summary: “An imbalance of societal power cannot be separated from cradle-to–grave economic inequality.”

JFYNetWorks was founded on the belief that all young people can find their own unique path to success in our dynamic economy– if they acquire the right skills. We have no magic trowel or miracle mortar to tuckpoint the fissures of inequity in the foundations of our society. What we do have is an education program that helps young people develop the skills that open the doors of opportunity.

We still believe that economic empowerment through education is the path to social justice. We will continue to put that belief into practice as long as equality remains a bedrock American value. Forty-four years after our birth under the sign of Justice, we still hold this truth to be self-evident. It’s in our DNA.

Gary Kaplan is the executive director of JFYNetWorks


HOW ARE WE DOING? In our pursuit to serve up content that matters to you, we ask that you take a couple of minutes to let us know how we’re doing? Please click here to be navigated to our JFYNet Satisfaction Survey. Thank you!

Teachers: Impact of COVID-19 on Daily Activities, Students and More

Teacher Perspectives: Shifting to Remote & Distance Learning

MAY 2020 PODCAST – This podcast features educators from Durfee High School in Fall River, Mindess Elementary School in Ashland, and Newton South High School discussing how the shift to remote learning due to the Covid-19 shutdown has impacted daily schedules, allowed some students to thrive, thrown other students off stride, and may create a “new normal” for education in the future.

Math skills. Not just a passing grade requirement, but essential for life after school

These skills are essential for life after school

There are basically two types of people in the world: those who already love math, and those who don’t love it yet. In this webinar, we explore why math skills are important, not just to pass required math classes, but also for jobs and for life after high school in our data-driven society where almost everything eventually turns out to be a numbers game.

Explore how and why these skills are important not just to ensure eventual success in math class, but also are important for jobs and professions, along with the basic living skills necessary once students graduate from high school.


More VIDEOS ON-DEMAND found here.



HOW ARE WE DOING?
In our pursuit to serve up content that matters to you, we ask that you take a couple of minutes to let us know how we’re doing? Please click here to be navigated to our JFYNet Satisfaction Survey. Thank you!

JFYNet staff report on the new COVID-19 normal.

Hero Educators Abound

by JFYNet’s Blended Learning Specialists: Eileen Wedegartner, Greg Cunningham and Cathie Maglio

Eileen Wedegartner

In a COVID-19 update April 2 Governor Baker apologized for not being able to name a specific date when something had happened. “I feel like March 6 to today has been one long day,” he mused. “I can’t keep track of it anymore.”

I knew what he meant. These last few weeks have been a whirlwind when life as we knew it drastically changed. Seemingly overnight, the streets in Boston fell silent and New York, the city that never sleeps, fell into a coma. Baker ordered all schools closed for three weeks and then extended it even longer, to May 4. District leaders, school administrators, teachers, parents and even students are mobilizing to try out learning in different ways. As I watch my own children navigate classroom meet-ups on Zoom and Google Hangouts, I am thankful for the efforts teachers are making to fill the void we in the community feel without school.

From face-to-face to online classes with Dr. Michael Marrapodi

Tips and Strategies for Teachers Transitioning to Online Courses

MARCH 2020 PODCAST – Today’s podcast will provide some tips and strategies for teachers transitioning to online courses. It features Dr. Michael Marrapodi, Dean of Online Programming at Cambridge College. This podcast was created by JFYNetWorks, a Boston-based nonprofit provider of blended learning programs to schools. JFY’s blended instructional support programs build skills and help raise individual and school performance measures. JFY brings online assessments and curriculum into the classroom and works with teachers to provide individualized instruction to help students achieve measured skill gains.

In response to the current crisis, JFY is now offering its online curriculum and teacher support remotely to help teachers sustain instruction during the shutdown. For more information on JFYNet‘s Remote Learning contact Greg Cunningham.

Teachers often wonder whether an online course can be as effective as a face to face course. As Dr. Marrapodi explains, the potential is absolutely there.

How to log into Mathspace, Online Learning

ON-DEMAND VIDEO brought to you by JFYNetWorks

DEAR JFYNet Partner School Students,

If you need help logging in and are unable to contact your teacher, you can email Greg at GCunningham@JFYNet.org. Be sure to include your full name, your school and teacher’s name as well as the course name.

THANK YOU,

Team JFYNetWorks

How to log into Achieve3000, online learning with JFYNet

ON-DEMAND VIDEO brought to you by JFYNetWorks

DEAR JFYNet Partner School Students,

If you need help logging in and are unable to contact your teacher, you can email Greg at GCunningham@JFYNet.org. Be sure to include your full name, your school and teacher’s name as well as the course name.

THANK YOU,
Team JFYNetWorks

Next Generation ELA: MCAS 2.0, Testing Strategies and Review [WEBINAR]

Preparation for English Language Arts in the Next Gen ELA MCAS

This recorded webinar will provide specific strategies for students to use during online testing, including a review of the technology enhanced format used by the English/Language Arts MCAS test and an explanation on how to make the best use of tools available when answering questions. Strategies are provided to prepare students for the specific types of questions featured on the upcoming English/Language Arts MCAS test.