Mayor, Superintendent Speak Collaboration

POUGHKEEPSIE – Last week, Mayor Rob Rolison delivered his State of the City Address and invited Dr. Eric Jay Rosser, superintendent of schools, to showcase the collaboration between the city and school district. The event, streamed on Facebook Live, welcomed approximately 100 members of the community to Change Point Theatre.

Mayor Rolison highlighted many accomplishments of city government which spoke to the importance of collaborative efforts of community, city, county and state entities who continue to fuel the renaissance of the City of Poughkeepsie. Mayor Rolison, welcomed co-chair of the Children’s Cabinet PCSD Superintendent Dr. Eric Jay Rosser to provide remarks on the collaboration and ongoing efforts to strengthen the outcomes of children, prenatal to college and career.

Rosser engaged the audience in reflecting on the academic, social, emotional wellness of children in the City of Poughkeepsie. Referencing one of the most notable and fabled ethnic groups of Africa, Rosser spoke to how the Masai in their engagement with one another will pose the question “How Are the Children?” Rosser stated that the saying “How Are the Children?” acknowledges the importance of children and places a value on their well-being for the current and future health of the community, noting that the philosophy of the Masai is reflective in what drives the collective work that the community is engaged in here.

Noting that when the question is asked that a natural response might be “Many of our children are well but not all of them.” The community has been grappled far too long with the fact that some of our children are challenged with finding success in and out of school.
Rosser shared an illuminating data point, which speaks to 20 percent of children’s’ waking hours, kindergarten through 12th grade, are in school, while 80 percent of the time is spent in the community.

He stressed the importance of a school, home, and community approach to addressing our children’s varying and evolving educational, social, emotional and wellness needs.

He highlighted that the Poughkeepsie Children’s Cabinet represents a “system of care” for the children of the city of Poughkeepsie. It provides them, their parents and caregivers, with a coordinated approach toward the provision of programs, supports, and services all aimed to strengthen:

* School readiness among our earliest learners.

* Positive youth development opportunities outside of the school environment.

* College, career, and civic readiness.

* Services that support the physical, social, and emotional health of those who will represent the community and contribute to its vitality.

Dr. Rosser stated that the Children’s Cabinet is perfectly poised, with other district, city and county action and initiatives to serve as a critical foundation to this important work. Rosser concluded his remarks by stating that Board members, administration, faculty, staff, parents, students and members of the community must continue to remain steadfast in our commitment in championing our children.

Before exiting the stage, Rosser and Mayor Rolison both took time to recognize the accomplishment of the Poughkeepsie High School boys basketball team in concluding a successful season making it to the Section A Finals.

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