Briya staff featured in Washington Area Women’s Foundation blog

Briya staff Mau Castro and Melissa Lorenzana shared about their experience as part of the Equity in Early Learning Initiative (EELI) in a blog post by the Washington Area Women’s Foundation #AskHer series.

In the blog, Mau shared, “In my opinion, for us, teachers, to have a positive effect on our students’ positive racial identity, it is imperative that we have recognized and fostered our own. That way we are nurturing and modeling self-love, acceptance, a positive attitude toward who we are, and how we contribute to society.”

You can read the full blog post here.

Briya staff publish article in COABE journal about Briya’s Spanish two-generation CDA class

Briya staff Mau Castro and Beth Kushner published an article about how Briya expanded career pathways for Spanish speakers through creating our two-generation CDA class and partnering with UDC on the creation the bilingual (English/Spanish) associate degree program in early childhood education. You can read the full article here.

They were also featured in this video, where they talk about why this program is important and what they hope readers can gain from their article.

Briya student and board member Flor featured in Telemundo story about DC Alliance

Briya student and board member Flor advocates for changes to the DC Alliance insurance renewal process in this Telemundo story. Flor’s experience shows the unacceptable difficulties of the current system. Briya staff member Raquel is also featured. This is part of Briya’s ongoing advocacy to change the DC Alliance insurance renewal process. You can watch the report here.

Briya student Alma and Briya staff Raquel featured in Telemundo story about excluded workers

“Remember that we are people too, that if you are hungry, we are hungry too.”

 

In this Telemundo story, Alma, a Briya student, shares her family’s experience during the pandemic and asks the mayor’s office to provide more support to DC residents who don’t qualify for a stimulus check or unemployment. Watch the video here.

New York Times Opinion article features Briya’s two-generation model and student-driven approach

“Briya’s holistic approach to education has come in handy during the pandemic…

‘Education is one arm in somebody’s success,’ said Reena Gadhia, the former manager of one of Briya’s work force training programs. ‘You really cannot disregard access to mental health services, access to social services, access to child care, transportation, all of it.’”

 

Read the article here.

 

Briya student Alma advocates for one year renewal period for DC Alliance

“We work, we all pay taxes. But to make it even harder for us to get health care, it makes us feel less than human…I felt shame when my daughter got older, and I had to keep taking her out of school to stand in that line.”
Check out this Washington Post column by Petula Dvorak, where Briya student Alma shares her experience with DC Alliance. In non-pandemic times, every six months Alliance recipients get up before dawn, miss school and work, and wait in line for hours, often with their children, just to keep their health insurance. Briya students are advocating for a one year renewal period instead of six months. Read the article here.

Briya student Marlene featured in Telemundo 44 story about DC Alliance advocacy

In this Telemundo 44 story, Marlene shares her experiences with the problems and stresses of renewing DC Alliance insurance in person every 6 months. Watch here.

Briya sees increase in Adult Ed programs during pandemic

“While financial and family motivation has drawn many adult learners to school, the seismic shift adult ed programs have undergone in the past nine months — namely, incorporating more flexibility like repeat classes and asynchronous learning options — has made it possible despite competing priorities such as child care, students said. Briya Public Charter School, for example, now offers English learner courses three times a day…The pandemic “really pushed us, and pushed a lot of adult schools, to think about: How can we be more innovative or more flexible in the way we’re delivering our programs?” said Ashley Simpson Baird, a research and policy consultant with Briya.” Briya was featured in an article about increasing interest in Adult Education during the pandemic. Read the article here.

Briya featured in NAPCS report

“COVID-19 brought nearly all Briya families a new set of extreme challenges. On top of working or finding employment, many of Briya’s adult learners had to shift their children to distance learning as they continued their own education online as well. Even while attending to a flood of urgent personal needs, Briya’s staff looked for ways to keep students learning. ‘Although Briya closed the doors to its school,’ adult student Rosario Sanchez reflected, ‘it did not close its doors to me.'” Briya was featured in a report by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools about how public charter schools are supporting students during the pandemic. Read the report here.

FOCUS Virtual Tour

In April, Briya held a virtual tour for DC city leaders, funders, and educators. This was part of a series of events organized by FOCUS DC (a DC charter advocacy organization) to show how charter schools are innovatively adapting to distance learning. The tour featured Briya’s English and Medical Assistant programs, as well as our 2 generation model. Briya students were also invited to speak about their experience learning at Briya.

Watch the tour here: