I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation to the Francis Lewis High School PTA and everyone involved in the development of our Community Networking Fair,November 19, 2011. My sincere gratitude goes out to our participating city agencies, local politicians, community based organizations, local businesses and vendors, and all of our guest speakers for their support in making this a successful event for our entire community.
The idea of a community networking event was based on a foundation to foster and build positive and fruitful relationships between the school community and our families. I strongly believe that the school community is at the core in connecting students, parents/guardians, and educators to a child’s success in life. A good education is instrumental in the development of a child’s self-esteem, confidence, and character. This is essential in building the necessary fundamentals to become a successful human being and good citizen; one who values the differences they bring to the community they share.
Francis Lewis High School is one of the most diverse schools in New York City with over 90 nationalities represented and over 60 different languages spoken at the homes of our students. Our students come from a variety of ethnic and economic backgrounds.
Many of our students are recent immigrants. These youngsters are capable of pursuing rigorous college preparatory programs, but they are often hampered by the absence of supportive services in school and at home. Language barriers and communicating with parents create a tremendous challenge for our school and finding ways to engage our school community in school initiatives is always at the forefront of our school wide goals. Furthermore, many of our students come from lower socio-economic groups and are not financially able to avail themselves of supportive services to succeed in school and life.The philosophy of a community networking event is based on the premise that all students can succeed given the proper attention and resources tailored to their individual needs. I hope that an event of this kind in which city agencies, local politicians, and community based organizations come together to educate and expose families with various types of services that are available to them to better support their children and families will be a valuable resource for our entire community. Diversity is our unity and knowledge is power.
Ultimately, I hope that the Francis Lewis High School PTA Community Networking Fair will be one that will grow and be modeled after for many years to come. Again, I thank everyone involved for all their efforts and support. As they say, “it takes a village to raise a child.”
Musa Ali Shama, Principal
PTA Planning Committee: Leslie O’Grady, Charles Pope, Linda Lang
Parent Coordinator: Connie Miaoulis
242-02 61 Avenue
Douglaston, NY 11362
61-07 Utopia Parkway
Fresh Meadows, NY 11365
Asian American Coalition for Education
202- 39 Rocky Hill Road
Bayside, NY 11361
LOCAL POLITICIANS: COMMUNITY BASED ORGANIZATIONS:
Senator Tony Avella SAYA
Councilman Peter Koo York College
Assemblyman Rory Lanceman Queens Community Herald
Assemblywoman Grace Meng Health Plus
Assemblyman David Weprin LaGuardia Community College
Community Board 11
Child Center of NY
TO ALL PARTICIPATING CITY AGENCIES, LOCAL BUSINESSES, VENDORS AND GUEST SPEAKERS
THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR SUPPORT