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Save for College Lightning Round with Jabari Brown, P.S. 234 Parent Coordinator

Aug. 20, 2019 – Astoria, NEW YORK

By NYC Kids RISE

What inspires you to keep engagement with families?

Many of our families come from situations that make the idea of going to college seem next to impossible due to financial concerns. As a result, many of them believe that it may be better to consider other options for their children’s future. Other families are so used the idea of not going to college that it becomes a mindset that is passed down to their children. What inspires me is that through the Save for College Program, we are starting to break down these walls and create a much higher sense of achievability when it comes to college expectations .

Tell us more about an idea you executed to help families activate their children’s NYC Scholarship Accounts.

Mr. Brown speaking at the 2018 Save for College Schools Conference

Theodore Roosevelt once said, “nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” This inspires me to take a more personal approach with supporting our families who are taking part in the NYC Kids Rise Save for College Program. Since our kindergartners were having their Moving Up Ceremony, at P.S. 234 we considered this would be a great opportunity to engage kindergarten parents with completing their building blocks for the program. I created and distributed personalized handouts, which included a step-by-step guide and the child’s name and student ID number. Families received this handout as they entered the school before the ceremony started to equip them with the information needed to activate their child’s NYC Scholarship Account.

What are you excited to try in the new school year?

I am excited to incorporate a more digital approach to promote the NYC Kid RISE Save for College Program with our kindergarten, 1st grade, and now 2nd grade families. I want to create a social media account to inform parents about resources, events and programs. I’m also looking forward to continue to improve communications methods such as more personalized flyers, grade specific robo-calls and emails, as well as, one-on-one conversations with parents.


Parent Coordinators like Jabari Brown are key ambassadors for students’ success. Throughout the school year, we have seen Mr. Brown’s engaging work such as College Money Mondays and during the moving up ceremony to ensure families have the tools and information they need to save for their child’s educational future — from activating students’ scholarship accounts (completing Building Block #1) to sharing #SaveForCollege Program resources.

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