Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Teaching Matters

Ingrid Edelman, Lynette Guastaferro, Executive Director of Teaching Matters, Olga Votis, Chairman of Teaching Matters, Nina Griscom, Brooke Shields, Patricia Farman-Farmaian, and Dana Creel
by Delia von Neuschatz

“Words are the windows to our world,” said actress, author and philanthropist Brooke Shields, quoting a New York City public school teacher while speaking about the crucial importance of early reading skills at the 9th Annual Champions of Education Luncheon. Hosted by Teaching Matters at the Metropolitan Club last Wednesday, in a room filled to capacity, the gathering was held in honor of Nina Griscom
The West Lounge of the Metropolitan Club.
Nina’s visionary mother, Elizabeth Rohatyn, founded the educational nonprofit more than 20 years ago.  “I am incredibly proud of Teaching Matters and all it does to transform the lives of so many students as well as teachers and principals in New York City,” affirms Nina.  Nina Griscom’s tribute to her late mother and Brooke Shields’ call to action helped to make this one of Teaching Matters’ most successful events, raising over $200,000 to improve reading outcomes for some of New York City’s youngest and most vulnerable children.
Elizabeth Rohatyn, founder of Teaching Matters.
Attendees included Dana Creel, Carol Mack, Susan Gutfreund, Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn, Lynn Nesbit, Krista Krieger, Susan Magrino, Beth Rudin DeWoody,  Peggy Siegal, Judy Cox, Julie Macklowe, Janna Bullock, Louise Grunwald, Ulla Parker, Alexia Luchen, Betsy Gotbaum, Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos, Kalliope Karella, Patty Raynes, Lily Baker, Lizzie Edelman, Remy Renzullo, Sharon Bush, Leo Piraino, Lady Liliana Cavendish, Veronica Bulgari, Cathy Graham, Fiona Rudin, Katherine Bryan, Barbara Bancroft, Patricia Farman-Farmaian, Sima Ghadamian and Bill Smith.
“Underprivileged kids hear 30 million fewer words by the age of four than higher income children.  Early Reading Matters equips children with the power of words.  Their chance of success in life rises with their reading ability,” reveals Brooke Shields.
Olga Votis and honoree Nina Griscom.
It is through its groundbreaking Early Reading Matters program that Teaching Matters aims to close the opportunity gap in urban schools.  Reading by third grade is the most important predictor of high school graduation and career success, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation. 

As such, the Early Reading Matters initiative works with K-3 faculty, training teachers how to effectively teach reading. The results speak for themselves. Brooke Shields revealed that at PS 94, a high-poverty school, books had to be replaced after only one year on the program because the children were “blowing through the material.” Early Reading Matters is currently implemented in 25 schools with a goal for expansion to 60 schools in the next several years.
For more than 20 years, Teaching Matters has offered in-depth programming to over 1,000 schools, 30,000 teachers and half a million students.
Teaching Matters’ overall mission is to develop and retain talented teachers and measurably increase their ability to give students in urban public schools an excellent education.  The organization’s approach has been validated, for an independent study found that in schools with populations of greater than 80% poverty rates, students who were taught by teachers in the Teaching Matters programs achieved statistically significant increases in writing performance and critical thinking skills.  Across the full spectrum of its programs, Teaching Matters reaches nearly 80,000 students in 200 schools.  To find out how you can help, click here.
Julie Macklowe and Jackie Martin. Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn and Peggy Siegal.
Susan Magrino Dunning and Mickey Ateyeh. Sonja Caproni and Janna Bullock.
Fiona Rudin.
Nina Griscom, Olga Votis, and Brooke Shields. Carol Mack.
Dana Creel and Larry Creel. Ingrid Edelman, Nina Griscom,  and Liliana Cavendish.
Nina Griscom and Bill Smith.
Lynn Nesbit. Janna Bullock, Olga Votis, and Debbie Loeffler.
Barbara Bancroft and Mary Hilliard. Cathy Graham and Sandy Golinkin.
Ulla Parker, Louise Grunwald, and Olga Votis. Patty Raynes.
Sharon Bush.
Caryn Zucker and Julie Gordon Cox. Delia von Neuschatz.
Dana Creel and Palmer O’Sullivan. Barbara Bancroft.
Elizabeth Buffone, Remy Renzullo, Lily Baker, and Meritt Piro.
Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos, Kalliope Karella, and Ulla Parker.
Patty Raynes, Beth Rudin de Woody, and Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos.
Lily Baker.
Lynette Guastaferro and Phil Weinberg.
Libby Mavroleon, Immi Storrs, and Bill Smith.
Susan Gutfreund, Marry Hilliard, and Katherine Bryan.
Betsy Gotbaum.
Brooke Shields.
Photographs by Patrick McMullan