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Partnerships Please! Buffalo Alliance for Education Honors the Standouts

The Buffalo Alliance for Education celebrated school partnerships last week with their annual Commitment to Education Awards ceremony. School partnerships are adding resources to the Buffalo City School District in innumerable ways. Both Mayor Byron Brown and Superintendent of Schools, Dr. James Williams participated in the ceremony, headed up by the organization’s president, Cindy Sterner.
The event also provided the opportunity for the school district to shine, with performances by the Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts Jazz Ensemble and Vocal Jazz Ensemble. Jay Dref, a junior at Performing Arts to open the ceremony, sang the National Anthem beautifully a cappella. Hutch Tech High School’s JROTC presented the Color Guard.
The Buffalo Bisons and New Era Cap Company received the Corporate Gold honor together for their commitment to outfitting the district’s baseball teams with hats, and updating twelve baseball fields. Music is Art received the Community Gold honor for their donations of instruments, and bringing music lessons into the schools in the future.
The Buffalo/Western New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects received a Corporate Silver award for their Architecture + Education program, which brought multidisciplinary programming to Performing Arts, Hutch The, Discovery and Waterfront schools last year. Buffalo State College’s Music Department was awarded the Community Silver for their partnership with Campus West Elementary, where Buff State music majors are working with elementary students learning to play instruments.
HSBC Bank’s 14 year partnership with Riverside Institute of Technology received the Corporate Bronze Award. This partnership provides job shadowing, internships, summer experiences, post graduation employment, and Kid Co, a program where students build and keep their own computers. Buffalo Blue Bicycle was awarded the Community Bronze for their 7 year old Recycle a Bicycle program.
Three individuals were given the Community Leader award. Dan Loncto, owner of Fleet Feet was honored for his commitment to raising the funds to keep Buffalo’s track and field teams outfitted with running shoes through the annual 15K Run. Bryan Shepard was honored for his service as a mentor representative and coordinator for Hamlin Park and Best Street schools since 1998. Finally Heath Szymczak heads the professional lawyers who mentor the Bennett High School Law Magnet program. He has been a coach for Bennett’s Mock Trial program since 2000.
The message of this event was clear: investment by the community in Buffalo Schools will allow them to better serve and educate the children of Buffalo. If your business or organization would like to build a partnership with a Buffalo Public School, contact Buffalo Alliance for Education through their website.

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