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The Keeper's Secret 5th Edition where every voice is heard and no story is left untold; Michael REgan, MBK Coordinator

Welcome to our 5th Edition of The Keeper's Secret, our monthly MBK newsletter. Here you will find all of the latest happenings in our My Brother's Keeper Program at Monticello Central School District. With so many amazing things happening in Monti-MBK, why keep it a secret? In this monthly newsletter we will stop at nothing to make sure every voice is heard and no story is left untold. Stay tuned every month and help spread the word so that nothing we do is kept a secret.

Watch our MBK Public Service Announcement to catch up on WHO we are, WHAT we do, and HOW we do it.

2ND ANNUAL "I HAVE A DREAM" COUNTY WIDE TALENT SHOW

Presented by Dream Tank & Hosted by Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

As you may remember, last year Dream Tank presented their first inaugural "I Have A Dream" Talent Show at Bethel Woods.

Over 400 parents and community members were in the audience, and at least 1 act from nearly every school district in Sullivan County performed that night. The winners from last year were Sullivan West 1st Place, Fallsburg 2nd, & Monticello 3rd.

This years talent show will be held at Bethel Woods on April 13th, with auditions being held on February 23rd.

Participation in this talent show is FREE, and Dream Tank is offering some major cash prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place.

While last year this talent show was restricted to high school students, this year they will be exploring talent of all ages in grades K-12. It is going to be BIG!

Watch last years auditions in video below:

RECENT EVENTS

MBK 1 YEAR ANNIVERSARY & MLK DAY CELEBRATION

It was an honor to celebrate MLK for our Monti-MBK 1 Year Anniversary with over 100 amazing supporters of this movement. With a packed house, we announced our expansion of MBK to reach children from Kindergarten through 12th grade. We also announced our Mayor and Superintendent’s signed commitment to register Monticello as a MBK Community so we can sustain this movement for years to come!

In attendance were the youth, parents, teachers, administrators, our MCSD Board of Education, Monticello Village Trustees, Sullivan County District Attorney, our Monticello Deputy Mayor, Monticello Chief of Police, Dispute Resolution Center, Human Rights Commission, Liberty Partners Program, Every Person Influences Children (co-host), Regent / Judge Josephine Finn, and much more.

Times Herald Record News Article
Mid-Hudson News Article

BREAKING NEWS

Monticello has officially taken the first step in becoming a My Brother's Keeper Community

The letter of commitment signed by our MCSD Superintendent Tammy Mangus, and our Monticello Village Mayor Gary Sommers, marks the official beginning of a long lasting movement to expand our MBK initiative beyond a grant funded school program, and collaborate with the greater community.

Our next step is to gather all stakeholders invested in this community to develop a Needs Assessment. This will allow us to gather feedback from the community and see what we can do to support the MBK milestones together.

If you would like to get involved in this MBK Community Initiative, please contact Michael Regan, the MBK Coordinator, via phone at 845-794-8840 x10954 or email at mregan@k12mcsd.net

Monti-MBK has expanded its program to reach youth in Grades K-12

Enrollment in our program has now quadrupled in size to reach children in every grade throughout all buildings in MCSD.

We have just begun our mentorship program which allows our high school students to mentor children in 4th through 6th grade.

We will soon begin our MBK Culturally Responsive Book Clubs which will allow our young children in every building to read a new book every week from the beginning of Kindergarten until the end of their elementary years in 5th grade. We have just purchased a large assortment of culturally responsive literature filled with characters from diverse backgrounds.

Children will also be offered Athletic Mentorship once a week during open gym night, as well as Civic Engagement using music as an outlet in our Digital Literacy Lab / Recording Studio.

Weekend programming will soon be available. This schedule is tentative and our goal is to begin our full expansion by the end of February, increasing enrollment to a total of 140 students.

Check out our video below which shows our MBK High School Mentors helping our mentees in Grades 4-6 in the first week of this new program.

STUDENT CORNER

MBK Mentors and Mentees Meet for the First Time

Special Thank You To Zanaya Cooper

MBK Student Design Intern & Member of MCSD's 1st Black Caucus, Zanaya Cooper, created this video compilation of black history explored during our MBK field trip to the National Museum of African American History in Washington, D.C. She made this video in honor of Dr. King at our 1 Year MBK Anniversary celebration. Watch this video and take a journey through time which captures both the obstacles and triumphs of African American culture throughout history.

Introducing our brand new Monti-MBK Hall of Distinction.

This hallway, located in Monticello High School, will be dedicated to displaying all of the highlights from our MBK program. The first to be displayed is our graphic recordings of the Fellows & Friends Leadership Retreat with NYSED which took place over the Summer of ‘18. Each picture captures the key messages from each presenter at this retreat.

TAKE A WALK DOWN OUR MBK HALL OF DISTINCTION

CONGRATULATIONS NOAH MORENO

We are so proud to call this young leader a member of our MBK family. Monti-MBK Student Design Intern & Mentor, Noah Moreno, just won the National MBK Alliance Competition for a spot at Barack Obama’s MBK Rising Conference in Oakland, CA. Noah has done many great things for Monticello, NY and especially for our My Brother’s Keeper Program. He is truly a rising star.

SEE BELOW FOR A LOOK AT THE OTHER WINNERS AND NOAH'S EXCLUSIVE WINNING MBK RISING VIDEO

CONGRATULATIONS TO SAVYON WILKS & JYLASIA HARDY

Both of these MBK students made honor roll for the first time this past marking period, calling for a celebration to Buffalo Wild Wings with their friends and supporters such as Regent Finn and MBK Coordinator, Mike Regan.

1st Time Honor Roll Celebrations have become a tradition for us here in MBK, and we look forward to many more celebrations to come in the future. We are always proud to support our students thriving in their academics.

CHANGING THE NARRATIVE

MBK students were asked: What is your favorite thing about MBK, and how have you changed since getting involved? These were some of their responses...

Troy Barino, 10th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper is the adults never give up on me no matter what problems I’m having. It has helped me to look at my life and my future more deeply. Even though it is still hard sometimes, I have learned to put my family first.
Noah Moreno, 12th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper is the platform it provides for me to lead our youth, and the countless opportunities it offers me to grow as a leader. I have learned more about how to effectively problem solve, set goals, and help my younger brothers in MBK.
Michael Brown, Jr., 10th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper is that they love every kid no matter what you do, they always love you. I have improved in many ways since joining MBK. Things have gotten better for me. I want to get good grades so I can fulfill my dreams and get a scholarship to a good college.
Druquan Hurley, 9th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper is that it helps me focus on my school work during tutorial with friends. My grades have improved. I am able to do a better job on my school assignments with the help of MBK.
Jamar Lewis, 11th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper that I feel like I have a family here. MBK will help me fulfill my dream to become a teacher.
Shameeck Clemons, 10th Grade: My favorite thing about My Brother’s Keeper is that I am seen as a role model. I have changed a lot. My attitude, and behavior has improved. Especially the way I present myself.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Many people ask why MBK is focused on improving outcomes for boys and young men of color. What about all the other kids? Don't they need help too?

MBK is here to help ALL kids succeed in life. We will never deny any child an opportunity to grow. We intentionally focus our efforts on our boys and young men of color because when Barack Obama founded the My Brother's Keeper Alliance, he did so based on acknowledgement of persistent and significant achievement gaps between boys and young men of color, and their counterparts.

MBK aims to bridge that gap through offering opportunities that may not have existed without the intentional efforts of this very important work. The fact of the matter is, when our boys and young men of color improve their outcomes, we ALL benefit, regardless of race, gender, or ethnicity.

A New York Times article recently published some research collected from Harvard University, Stanford University, and the US Census Bureau which show substantial racial disparities between our men of color and their counterparts. Take a look below to see some examples of the achievement gaps we aim to eliminate through MBK.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Check out this video from last years field trip to SUNY Delhi with a visit from Monti-High Alumni, Jamal George!

THANK YOU FOR GETTING TO KNOW US BETTER! Stay tuned next month for our 6th Edition of "The Keeper's Secret" to learn even more about our program and what we have coming up for this year! And remember... Don't keep us a secret!
Created By
Michael Regan
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