The Brighton Neighborhood Association, in conjunction with the Independence Community Bank Foundation, graduated students of its Spanish-English Program, an initiative which invited Spanish-speaking parents to learn English, and which also allowed the students to bring their children to class, as many of them do not have babysitters.
According to BNA Executive Director Pat Singer, “Now that the students can speak English, they will be able to navigate the school system, be a part of the community, and this will give them a voice in the community.” The students, she continued, “will become involved in community issues now that they speak English.”
Each parent was presented with a Certificate of Achievement and also brought in home cooking from their country of origin to share with classmates. They took turns reading thank you notes to their teacher, Claudia Escoto and Singer, as well.
“It was so very gratifying to see these young parents read out loud their feelings about the program and their appreciation for the opportunity presented by the Brighton Neighborhood Association. BNA received initial support for this pilot program through New York Community Trust. Independence stepped in and helped us continue the program until June,” said Singer.
For more about the program, call BNA at 718-891-0800.