Archive | February, 2011

Chris Brown DYES HAIR!

27 Feb

Check out this new hair color on Chris Brown! Get into it!

I will put aside my feelings of indifference for Chris Brown and just say this: He is lucky he has the light skin tone he does; on many others, this would have been a tech/pause/no homo moment. GOOD DAY!

P.S. Check out the jewelry on Chris Brown’s wrist. I’m actually enjoying that along with the lady’s fresh manicure on his right hand side.

I’m getting AMY vibes! 🙂




27 Feb


Two past flames of artist Chris Brown got into a heated exchange on After Ciara appeared on E Network’s “The Fashion Police,” with Joan Rivers among others, Rihanna unleashed fury via her twitter page. Ciara offered unnecessary information during a style segment on Rihanna’s clown-extravagant ball room ish dress, saying:

After these comments, Rihanna took to the cyber-world, writing on her twitter “My bad Ci, did I forget to tip you?,” later adding “U gangsta huh?”

Later that night, Ciara got her internet gangsta on and replied “Trust me Rihanna you don’t want to see me on or off the stage,” to which the Disturbia singer replied “Good luck with booking that stage u speak of.”

That last comment, via Rihanna, gave me everything I needed to keep up a semi-love for Rihanna. The confidence, which her comment exuded, quickly ended any chance Ciara had at a tweet-comeback, especially when Rihanna ended the feud tweeting, “Ciara baby, I love you girl! You hurt my feelings real bad on TV! I”m heartbroken! That’s’ why I retaliated this way! So sorry! Let’s make up.”

Ciara accepted the truce. Who the fck wants war?

“Rhi, u know its always been love since day 1! Doing shows and everything,” she wrote. “You threw me off in that party! Apology accepted. Let’s chat in person.”

All this twitter beef! Why do we as black artists, musicians, and people in general put one another down? I will never understand.

MAD! Minority Abortion Disaster

25 Feb

When I look at the above photo, my mind evokes a number of feelings; feelings of hurt, guilt, shame, anger, disappointment, but most of all OUTRAGE! Although the statistics show that minority women are responsible for a large percentage of the abortions in the U.S. this ad, on a billboard in Soho, NYC, is NO way to raise awareness. It is insensitive and a direct jab at our women of color. I say we burn it!


24 Feb

I have some great news! John Dewey High School is NOT on the New York City Public High Schools Closing list. Our efforts have helped out tremendously. This means that there are two more options available to our alma mater. The transformation model and the turnaround model. We can only hope for the transformation model. This way, we are able to retain our deeply rooted values and improve the current system, rather than obliterating it completely. You will find each option described below (copied from the NYSED website).

We need your help! DONATE to the cause now. I urge my fellow JDHS alumni to join the association. I joined it and the cost is only $10. CLICK THIS LINK TO JOIN I want to extend many thanks to my peers who were able to send me those letters. You all are amazing! DONATE NOW! and please subscribe to our alumni newsletters! CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE!

Here are some Alumni Letters which I am so appreciative for:


From: Howard Boden

John Dewey was not only an educational requirement it was a cultural experience. I learned and became acquainted with people who I never would have at any other high school. I participated in Advanced Placement courses as well as chorus, piano,contemporary broadway and dance ensemble.

Not only did my brain get properly fed but my character grew as well. I looked forward to going to school , to studying and to just being around people who shared my same lust for life. The college atmosphere prepared me for my graduate and undergraduate experiences. I appreciate everything that John Dewey High School taught me because it not only prepared me for life it strengthened and molded me into the person that I have become today. Now I am a senior attending John Jay College of Criminal Justice .

I work as an extended day 1st grade teacher for the UFT/YWCA program and I am the editor in chief of a not for profit newsletter. Without my experience at John Dewey I can honestly life would be different for me. Please reconsider your decision , if our children are the future they need an institution that can provide adequate structure to prepare them for life’s hurdles.

Sincerly, Howard D. Borden
From: Dana Schneck

54 Freedom Avenue/Staten Island, New York 10314

November 14, 2010

Deputy Chancellor Sternberg/Department of Education/Tweed Courthouse

52 Chambers Street/New York, NY 10007

Dear Mr. Sternberg,

I am compelled to write you about the planned demise of John Dewey High School.

I am a proud 1974 graduate and consider myself lucky and privileged to have been able to attend the school. I received a world-class education there. The rich curriculum allowed me to explore a vast array of different subjects that were taught by gifted teachers. I hold both a masters and a bachelor’s degree and view my four years at Dewey the best of my academic career.

I find it ironic that the Department of Education (DOE) cites poor graduations rates and other metrics when, in fact, it has been the DOE that has chipped away at John Dewey H.S. and its program in recent years in a quest to destroy it. Their master plan is to systematically close our comprehensive New York City high schools and replace them with charter schools. The only way this can be achieved is to allow them to fail by withholding funding for resources and creative programs, ”dumping” students at a school they don’t want to attend, and changing a school’s entrance criteria. John Dewey H. S. is one of the victims.

When I attended, the original program consisted of an eight-hour day that consisted of classes and free time. The free time could be used for studying at a resource center, working on a D.I.S.K. (Dewey Independent Study Kit), participating in extra-curricular activities or performing service for the school. There were five “cycles” (terms) per year as we changed classes every seven weeks. The grading system consisted of M for mastery, MC for master with condition, which required remedial work, and R for retention for reinforcement. The program allowed you to learn at your own pace. The teachers had received special training to teach in such an innovative and flexible environment and were simply superb!
I could have completed all of my credits for graduation in three years, but chose to stay for the usual four years because I loved it there! (I might note other students who took longer to graduate have gone on to successful careers.) I not only completed the requirements for a regents-endorsed academic diploma, but took many elective courses for further enrichment. Because of the flexible curriculum and innovative instruction, I was able to take courses such as Mythology, Women in Literature, Science Fiction, Calculus, Abstract Algebra, Fashion Design and even Speedwriting. After completing my three year sequence in French, I completed a D.I.S.K. in Italian to get a taste of that language. I worked in the Programming Office, joined the cast of the school production each year and sang in the Concert Choir and the Madrigal Singers. In fact, we performed at the opening of the World Trade Center in 1973!

A student attending Dewey could always find something to piqué their academic interest. The faculty of every department in the school was stellar. In particular, the music, art and dance offerings were so diverse that they rivaled programs at other high schools of the arts at the time. Students were engaged and took control of their education there. I certainly did. I never wanted to go home!

After graduation, I attended Fordham University, having been offered an academic scholarship from the University as well as having received a UFT Scholarship. My transition to college was smooth. I earned a B. A., summa cum laude, with a double major in Mathematics and Psychology, including certification in Mathematics Adolescent Education, grades 6 – 12. There is no doubt in my mind that my high school education more than prepared me for the rigors of college. While as an employee in Research and Development of AT&T Bell Laboratories, I completed my Masters degree in Computer Science. Today, I am a Senior Software Engineer at Bloomberg, L.P.

By the way, my brother and I grew up in a working class neighborhood in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, raised by our mother and grandmother. Our father had died when I was ten years old and my mother waited tables to support our family. We could have been another failure statistic in public education, but we were not. My brother is a dentist and a graduate of John Dewey H. S., Class of 1976.

Back in the mid-1960s, Dr. Joshua Segal was specially tasked by the Board of Education to create an academic program modeled after the educational philosophy of John Dewey. Public education in New York City was in crisis and so John Dewey H. S. was born in 1969 to answer the cry for help. Its overwhelming success led to the opening of Edward R. Murrow H.S., with a similar academic program. If public education is indeed in crisis again and history does repeat itself, then the solution is obvious. As a member of the Board of Directors of the John Dewey High School Alumni Association (JDAA), I implore you to go back and check Dewey’s glorious history and successes. Reinstatement of the original program, along with the Council for Unity and JDAA Circle curricula and proper funding will engage the students of today and allow them to succeed.


Dana R. Schnek

John Dewey Alumni Association

Class 1974

From: Chrissy Andre

To Chancellor Cathleen P. Black,

I can distinctly remember being in the 8th grade in 2002 and applying to High school. It was both an exciting experience and one filled with nervousness. Would I get into my 1st choice? How would the transition into high school be, after attending same school from Kindergarten through the 8th grade? These questions ran through my 13-year-old mind and then I remember finding John Dewey High School. After I read the synopsis on the school, I knew it was the one for me. The only thing left was my acceptance.

A few months later I found out that I was indeed accepted. The four years I spent at John Dewey High School was one that can never be summed up into a few short adjectives. I loved the fact that Dewey was not like every other high school in New York. John Dewey didn’t have marking periods, we had Cycles and each cycle we were given a list of classes that we could choose from to satisfy curriculum requirements. We were given a choice, and that in itself was unique. The use of Free Bands was instrumental in The John Dewey Way. We as students were able to use this time to go to Resource Centers, and talk to teachers and get help in the particular subject you were having issues with. We had an extended day, which allowed us to get more school work done while in school. John Dewey High school is rich in history.

The First Academy of Finance began at John Dewey, Council for Unity which I was an active participant in began at the school in 1975 by English Teacher Robert J. De Sena who was fed up with the racial violence that was going on at the school and in the neighborhood. He managed to get 6 gang leaders to sit down and have a round table discussion on how they could end the ongoing violence. A school with such rich history does not deserve to simply be closed down and re-opened a year later broken into miniature schools. It deserves to be fought for! When I graduated from John Dewey I knew I was well equipped to enter college. After all I was already used to choosing my classes, and John Dewey had that campus feel so it wouldn’t be a radically new concept when I entered college. I entered SUNY College at Old Westbury in 2006 and four years later in May of 2010 I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated. Now as I prepare myself for my next step: law school, I am thankful for all those teachers in John Dewey that helped me to stay on the path of success. I thank my Home Economics Teacher Mrs. Tuitt for all those conversations she had with me about never giving up, using the adversities placed against you to triumph. I thank my Council for Unity Teacher Ms. Hooker, for teaching me to fight for what I believe in, to go against the grain even when it seems like it’s not the most popular choice.

Right now I’m urging Chancellor Cathleen P. Black and the members of the Board of Education to not close John Dewey High school. It may seem like the easiest choice, but the easiest choice is not always the best one.

“Education is not a preparation for life; education is life itself. John Dewey “


Chrissy Andre

Class of 2006

E: Mail

Cell Phone: 917 652 9021

Intervention Models Summary of the Required Components
Turnaround Model
In New York, there are two versions of the turnaround model: in one version, a school is phased out and replaced by a new school over time. In the second version, the existing school remains open, but the school is completely redesigned.  (The provisions of existing collective bargaining agreements remain in effect.)
Replace the principal and replace at least 50% of the staff;
Implement incentives (financial, career) to promote recruitment and retention of high quality staff and provide high quality professional development to staff;
Adopt a new school governance structure;
Use student performance data to inform and differentiate instruction;
Increase learning time;
Provide appropriate social-emotional supports and community-oriented services to students.
Restart Model
A restart model may include either conversion of a school to a charter school or the replacement of a public school by a new charter school that will serve the students who would have attended the public school. Under certain circumstances districts may also enter into contracts with the State University of New York, or in New York City, the City University of New York, for them to manage public schools.
Convert or close the school and re-open under a charter school operator, charter management organization (CMO), or education management organization (EMO) (EMOs must first be approved by the Legislature).  

Enroll in the restart school, within the grades it serves, any former student who wishes to attend the school.

Transformation Model
A school that opts for a transformation model does not close but rather remains identified as persistently lowest achieving until it demonstrates improved academic results.  (An LEA with more than 9 persistently lowest achieving schools [New York City] may not use this model for more than 50% of identified schools.  See Page 45 of USDOE RTTT Application.)
Similar to the Turnaround Model
Uses a rigorous and equitable evaluation system for teachers and principals and rewards school leaders, teachers, and other staff who, in implementing this model, have increased student achievement and high school graduation rates, and identifies/removes those who, after ample professional development, have not increased student achievement.
School Closure Close the school and enroll the students who attended the school in higher achieving schools in the LEA.


24 Feb

Nicole Miller brought the heat with this year’s collection. Innovation met sophistication on each model who walked the runway. Some of the pieces initiated flashbacks to “The Devil Wears Prada.”Take a look at some awesome runway work below:

A Broadway Production – NYC Subway Edition

20 Feb

What a better way to end a Saturday afternoon than to see a Broadway production, free of charge and on NYC’s trademark transportation system, the MTA? Yesterday, as I made my way to work, I did just that. I know we have all seen some interestingly unique characters on our transportation system in New York, but this one was a full put production and I had to record!


Reciting the words, “Learn the Words,” from an old school popular rap song, this man was clearly high or drunk; evidently, he was feeling like giving a show. What a great production I was able to witness. In fact, he is my inspiration behind creating a whole new category, namely “MTA MOMENT ON THE WEEK.” Enjoy, and I hope you can “learn the words!”

VENEXIANA – A Brand of Luxury

15 Feb

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week continued with a Venexiana presentation. Who is the mastermind behind the design? None other than Kati Stern, who launched this rock n roll couture brand back in 2003.  The various looks on the runway came together well. A special thank you goes out to Michelle Riley, who helped out tremendously in capturing these photos:







ABOVE: Some sleek pieces that caught my eye







ABOVE: These furs were extravagant. For a night of fancy dining/lounging







ABOVE: The drapery on these dresses also caught my eye. Well done







ABOVE: I’m not completely sure if I enjoyed these as much. Something seemed off.











ABOVE: Michelle Riley; someone didn’t want to take a photo, lol






















DESIGNER of MUS by MALIRO, Swanks aka Mali