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College and Career Readiness through Blended Learning

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Diversity relies on deeper talent pool in Boston

How to Achieve Diversity in Boston and Massachusetts Business

by Gary Kaplan, Executive Director of JFYNetWorks and David Driscoll, former Massachusetts Commissioner of Education. | Originally published by the Boston Business Journal on 11/11/16. See the original post here.

Speaking to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce last month, Mayor Walsh challenged Boston’s business leaders to confront their lack of diversity and to assemble a workforce and leadership teams reflective of the city’s demographics. The response was enthusiastically positive. But how can diversity actually be achieved?

Leadership teams rise from the workforce, and the workforce of the Boston and Massachusetts business community comes more than ever from the college graduate pool. Promotion through the ranks is a natural process of corporate capillarity. Despite the steps that many businesses are taking to improve diversity, in order for more people of color to rise through the workforce there has to be a more diverse pool of college graduates. This is where the problem begins.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT:
Patti Parisella
JFYNetWorks
617-338-0815 x 222
PParisella@jfynet.org


JFYNetWorks joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement pledges to prepare urban youth for successful college entry without the need for remedial courses.

Boston, MA November 23, 2016 – JFYNetWorks has joined #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. JFYNetWorks helps urban high school students prepare for successful college entry with blended learning instructional programs that eliminate the need for remedial college courses.

Occurring this year on November 29, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely-recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday to kick-off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate in improving their local communities and to give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.

Madison Park Technical Vocational High School Student

It’s Time for Madison Park To Get Some Respect

by Gary Kaplan

The Boston Globe Magazine’s recent article on vocational education (School of Work, 10/2/16) came down like a ton of raw concrete on Boston’s Madison Park Technical Vocational High School.  One commentator blamed Madison Park for “vocational education’s tarnished reputation in Massachusetts” while another recommended scrapping the school altogether and “start[ing] over again.”  There are legitimate reasons to be frustrated with Madison Park; but there are better options than the dumpster.

Workplace skills then and now: The Lesson of Inland Steel

Workplace Skills Then and Now: The Lesson of Inland Steel

by Gary Kaplan

“Sorry, son, we can’t hire you. You’re overqualified.”

Thus ended my career as a steelworker. The place was Inland Steel in East Chicago, Indiana. The time was the 1970s. I was looking for an interim job while I plotted my next career move. I thought that working in a steel mill would be educational, in addition to bringing in some serious, and seriously needed, cash.

I had grown up in the Calumet Region of Northwest Indiana, one of the world’s largest concentrations of heavy industry. Steel mills and oil refineries were the landscape of my childhood. Many of my high school classmates had gone directly to work at Inland, Youngstown, US Steel or Standard Oil and were well on their way to owning a house, a car, a cabin in Michigan, a boat, and eventually a union pension. Though I had been around the mills my whole life, I had never been inside them. I thought it was time I found out how America’s industrial might was created.

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The Giving Common is Your Place for Informed Giving in Massachusetts

by Paula Paris, JFYNetWorks Deputy Director

JFYNetWorks is proud to announce our newly published profile now featured on The Giving Common, and we invite you to visit us there. In our profile you will find the most current and comprehensive in-depth look into JFYNetWorks – our programs, history, operations, staff, governance, finances, unique features, community impact, achievements and challenges – all in a reader-friendly format. We hope these narratives and data answer most of the questions you would want to ask about JFYNetWorks and that you will want to know even more.

JFYNet 2016 Partner Schools

YOU DID IT! CLASS OF 2016!

We are exceedingly proud of JFYNet Partner Schools. The schools’ commitment to the success of their students is evident in all they do. We are especially proud of this year’s graduation classes. Congrats JFYNet Partner School Grads!

Rising to readiness through blended learning

Readiness through blended learning reaps benefits for all students.

by Eileen Wedegartner, Blended Learning Specialist

Since joining JFYNetWorks as a Blended Learning Specialist last fall, I have had the opportunity to visit many schools and interact with many students. Despite my many years of experience in the classroom and additional years in statewide education administration, this was a new and eye-opening experience. It has proved to be challenging, and extremely rewarding.

Having spent the better portion of my professional life working with students who face barriers to learning, I can empathize with their struggles and with the challenges their teachers face on a daily basis. As an educator, I have always believed that where there is a will, there is a way.

Blending different abilities and learning styles creates dynamic environment

Blending different abilities and learning styles creates dynamic environment.

by Greg Cunningham, Blended Learning Specialist

When I first saw the job title “Blended Learning Specialist” I pictured a culinary instructor in an apron demonstrating how to make smoothies in a food processor. “Two scoops of ice, one cup of blueberries, a banana, a pinch of cinnamon and blend. ” What I discovered was a bit different: a new world inside the classroom fostered by the ability to help students learn in an environment where they are the center of attention and the teacher acts as a coach and motivator of their learning.

Blended Learning at East Boston High

Creating opportunity through blended learning at East Boston High School.

by Cathie Maglio, Blended Learning SPECIALIST

I witnessed something special in an MCAS Prep class at East Boston High.

I walked into the class and saw students walking around with their laptops talking. As I moved farther into the classroom I saw they were all logged into their math application solving algebra problems, which may sound like nothing much but they were all working together, helping each other, trying to solve the problems without asking the teacher. And I saw one student explaining how to do a problem in Spanish so other students could understand.