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The Unity Scoop – May 8

Dear Students and Families of Unity,

I hope this edition of The Unity Scoop finds you in continued good health and good spirits.

As you may know, Governor Cuomo recently announced that all public schools in the state of New York will continue with remote learning for the remainder of the school year.  We are saddened by the news as we miss seeing our students everyday and very much want to reconnect in person and celebrate our successes this year.  We are particularly saddened by not being able to conclude the year with our 8th graders and 12th graders in the way that we had envisioned.  We are now considering how to best honor our graduating students given the remote nature of our collaboration through the end of the year.  We will provide updates for end-or-year festivities within the next two weeks.

For now, the best thing we can do for ourselves and for others is continue to care for our health and safety, and continue to support one another to provide the best learning experience for our students.  This guiding principle, for me, is both comforting and inspirational.  It aligns with Unity’s mission and goals, regardless of whether that work is done in person or remotely.  Indeed, there is strength in unity.

With this edition of The Scoop, I am excited to celebrate a number of students and their recent accomplishments.  On behalf of Unity’s entire faculty and staff, we are inspired by the courage, dedication, and care that our students have demonstrated throughout this challenging time.  We are proud and honored to serve such an amazing community of students and families.

On a final note, we thank all family members who completed our survey last week.  Your feedback is extremely valuable.  Overall, we are pleased to hear that you are satisfied with how we have managed the transition to remote learning.

Warmest regards,
Josh Beauregard
Head of School


Updates as of May 8, 2020:

  1. Celebrating Academic Excellence at Unity!: Our students have been working very hard this year, especially over the past month as we transitioned to remote learning.  We are excited to celebrate their achievements in their coursework and learning.  Today, we highlight 13 excellent students across grades 6-12 with Students of the Month Awards at our middle school and Student Shout-Outs at our high school:
  • Middle School Students of the Month for April!
    • 6th Grade:
      • Katelynn R.
      • Francis A.
    • 7th Grade:
      • Jalicia W.
      • Jade B.
    • 8th Grade:
      • Shaniel C.
      • Elizabeth Y.
  • High School Student Shout-outs from Teachers for Excellence in Remote Learning!
    • 9th Grade:
      • Jessica C.: you’ve shown so much resilience since joining our community mid-year, especially during remote learning.  You have taken the time to complete missing work, you support other students during class time, and we love how you come up with brilliant ideas and questions constantly!
      • Giuliano S.: you are such a positive influence on your peers!  You show up every day and are consistently engaged and on your A-Game!  Thank you for doing what you do and being so helpful in class!
    • 10th Grade:
      • Jailynn K.: since the beginning of remote learning, you have been consistently on time and you have followed up with your teachers for any questions or concerns.  You were one of the first students to complete the College Now application!
      • Cierra N.: you proactively and maturely communicate with your teachers when any issues or “aha” moments arise!  Thank you for being a self-motivated, responsible role model for other Panthers!
    • 11th Grade:
      • Ja’Don R.: not only do you have the biggest and best hair in the school, but your attendance and work completion since remote learning has been exemplary!  You also execute your work at a high level, which sets a great example for other students!
      • Kahleek M.: during our “new normal,” you’ve been consistently professional, have advocated for yourself to your studies, and have been on top of keeping your grades on point!  Keep working hard and striving for what you want!
    • 12th Grade:
      • Chris B.: you are a reliable student who works tirelessly to submit your work on time, help other students, and you do it all with a sense of grace! You balance being a big brother and a senior while showing so much resilience and professionalism.  We can’t wait to see how far you go!
      • Nigel D.: you are diligent in class, actively participate in all activities, and best of all, you are empathetic and compassionate.  Who else checks in on the well-being of students and teachers alike!  You do, and we thank you for that!


  1. Celebrating Stellar Student Attendance!:In addition to academic excellence, it is also worth highlighting the dedication of so many of our students to their studies through their excellent attendance in our remote classrooms.  This past week, we had 110 students in the grades 6-12 who had 100% attendance in their classes – here is the all-star list!

Middle School Students:

6th Grade Students 7th Grade Students 8th Grade Students
Eliza C. Ahkeelah W. Brandon R.
Jason E. Ajani D. Chalmers L.
Richard B. Amaya T. Christian S.
  Aniyah A. Isarina C.
  Celine P. Jaleel B.
  Chasity H. Jalia N.R.
  Connor S. Jason M.
  Eycha J. Jayden C.F.
  Jade B. Kaylah D.
  Jalicia W. Krystian M.
  Jamal S. Nicholas D.E.
  Jayde S. Nickwayne D.E.
  Jayla H. Ziaire P.
  Jeremiah S.  
  Keyontae J.  
  Mohagany B.  
  Najir M.  
  Nakayla B.  
  Natalie D.  
  Nataliya M.  
  Preston W.  
  Priscilla G.  
  Rowmar W.  
  Samara S.  
  Shaila G.  
  Shamira A.  
  Sokona G.  
  Tawrey N.  
  Triston S.  
  Tyleak B.  

High School Students:

9th Grade Students 10th Grade Students 11th Grade Students 12th Grade Students
Amber S. Aisha B. Alicia G. Adewale F.
De’ana A. Alexander C. Ami S. Akili N.
Deinaycia G. Antwon D. Aniyah L. Isheanna M.
Giuliano S. Arianna W.S. Coron S. Jah’Mir M.
Jason P. Brandon M. Gregory S. Jalik D.
Kevin J. Cierra N. Ja’Don R. Jordan G.
Lamorie-Jay G. Damion B. Jada W. Leslie G.
Nylah W. Isaiah B. Jade H. Mauriel R.
Sarafina C. Jailynn K. Jordie W. Rondell B.
  Jasmin Q. Kayla T. Sarah M.
  Joel W. Maimouna D. Sebastian L.
  John A. Moshawn B. Tajanaye M.
  Jordan F. Roshawana S. Tyrek B.
  Joshua L. Semaj G. Tyrese M.
  Kenny R. Shenise A. Valerie R.
  Malika S.   Vanesha S.
  Mia C.   Vladimir R.
  Michael D.   Zaniah J.
  Nyomi B.    
  Samija T.    
  Saniya F.    
  Sincere B.    
  1. Video Conference with Co-Principals on May 12th and 15th:We are excited to convene virtually with families this coming week.  Meetings will be held virtually via Google Meet.  We welcome you to take part in conversation with our principals about events and topics that are relevant to our school.  Caregivers are able to attend the meetings by clicking on the links below:


  1. Introducing Unity’s Weekly Trivia Contest:Does the quarantine have you cooking more than usual? Are you tired of washing dishes?  Well, here’s your chance to win a night away from the kitchen! Each week, The Scoop will feature Unity Trivia!  Answer each question correctly for an opportunity to win a Seamless gift card. The winner will be selected at random and announced in next week’s Scoop.  Click here to access this week’s trivia contest and reach out to cbeckford@unityprep.org with any questions.  Students and caregivers are both eligible to participate.


  1. Letter Sent Home to the Families of All High School Students Taking Health this Semester-Last week, all students who are currently enrolled in health class were given this letter from the NYC Department of Education.  This letter pertains to the upcoming classes that will focus on sexual health, more specifically HIV/STI prevention.  Please review the letter and reach out to your child’s Health teacher, Mr. Martinez (tmartinez@unityprep.org) or Mr. Coleman (acoleman@unityprep.org) with any questions.

Relevant Information from Past Editions of The Scoop:

  1. Resources Regarding Unemployment Due to COVID-19:NYC has developed alist of resources for those who may be unemployed due to COVID-19 or are seeking additional assistance. The website will be updated frequently and includes information on employment/unemployment, food assistance, financial assistance, rent arrears, health and medical assistance, and so forth.


  1. Free Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner available for Students and Adults:Any New Yorker, child or adult, has access to three free meals a day at more than 400 Meal Hubs across the city (including PS44), between 7:30am – 11:30am for children and families and from 11:30am to 1:30pm for adults. More details, including a search tool, is available by clicking here.


  1. Resources for Mental Health and Talking to Young People About COVID-19:The New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) has provided thisguide for self-care and strategies for talking about COVID-19 honestly and effectively with young people. In addition, here is a link for webinars for “Parenting During COVID-19” through the Weil Cornell Psychiatry Department. If your child or family member is experiencing a mental health crisis, NYC Well is available 24 hours a day and can be accessed by phone (1888-NYC-WELL) or text (text WELL to 65173) or by internet chat via their website: https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us/en/.  In addition, a mental health hotline has been established in New York City that will provide FREE emotional support, consultation, and referral to a provider. The hotline number is: 1-844-863-9314.


  1. Mental Health Counseling and Social Work Services Available to Unity Students who Receive Counseling:Social workers will continue to hold remote counseling sessions for all students who receive counseling throughout this week. Please reach out to Ms. Del Purgatorio via phone or text (347-688-9107) or email (tdelpurgatorio@unityprep.org) if you have any questions about the continuation of counseling services or if you are concerned about your child’s mental health. Unity social workers can also be of assistance in providing information regarding social services (for example: housing, access to food, access to community mental health services, referrals to mental health providers, crisis intervention, etc.).


  1. Helpful Guidance on Obtaining the Perfect Book for Your Child:With the Unity Library closed for the time being, our public libraries in Brooklyn offer a vast majority of their books and resources online.  Additionally, many private companies are stepping up and offering their services for free.  Check out thishelpful guide to gain access to ebooks or audiobooks from the Brooklyn Public Library.  In addition, see the list of resources below:
  • Do you have dyslexia, blindness, cerebral palsy, or other reading barriers? Access Bookshare’s free online ebooks.
  • Are you an English Language Learner (ELL) and interested in practicing your English? Are you looking to learn a new language? Rosetta Stone is being offered free for three months to all students.
  • Are you finding it difficult to spend all day looking at a computer screen? Download BeeLine reader for free, which uses color gradients to make reading just a little bit easier.
  • Worried that by spending so much time alone your vocabulary is growing more and more limited by the day?
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