FirstStepNYC Early Childhood Center and Early Education Leadership Institute


In the Media

First Lady Chirlane McCray’s visit at FirstStepNYC – March 6, 2014, View photos

Mayor Bloomberg and Chancellor Walcott visit FirstStepNYC – 2013, View photos

Mets and Major League Baseball Donate $300,000 for Brownsville School’s Courtyard Renovation – July 17, 2013 – Daily News

FirstStepNYC Renovation Project with Major League Baseball – July 16, 2013 –

What to look for in a pre-kindergarten program – October 23, 2014 – InsideSchools

A Message From Bank Street’s President – December 19, 2014 – Bank Street College of Education Newsletter

What do I do? I teach! – Shavon Frazier – January 2015 – Teaching Young Children (NAEYC)

FSNYC Public Events

Upcoming Events
Past Events
Thursday, September 18th, 2014

CUNY’s Child Program Administrators Credential (CPAC) classes began onsite.

Monday, October 6th, 2014

The Early Education Leadership Institute at SCO’s FirstStepNYC held a Career Panel Dinner to engage and develop early childhood leaders citywide.

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014
The Early Education Leadership Institute at SCO’s FirstStepNYC hosted a delegation of educators, policymakers and representatives from the City of Pittsburgh on July 17th. This Pittsburgh delegation joined us to gain insight on how New York City is implementing universal pre-kindergarten. Shout out to Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young ChildrenPittsburgh Public SchoolsCity of Pittsburgh – Office of the Mayor and Natalia Rudiak for City Council (District 4) for their passion and commitment to the education of young children.
DSC_0206b DSC_0209bDSC_0273b DSC_0258b
Monday, July 14th, 2014
The Early Education Leadership Institute at SCO’s FirstStepNYC launched its’ first Breakfast Series event on July 14th. Guest facilitator, Dr. Kara Ahmed, Principal of the LYFE Program, NYC Department of Education shared advice and promising practices using Powerful Interactions.Tuesday, June 17th, 2014
The Early Education Leadership Institute at SCO’s FirstStepNYC held its first Career Panel Dinner on June 17th to engage and develop early childhood leaders citywide. Panelists included:
  • Steven Antonelli, Center Director, BankStreet Early Headstart
  • Gail Gordon, Adjunct Faculty at BankStreet and Hunter School of Social Work
  • Sophia Pappas, Executive Director, DOE Division of Early Childhood Education
  • Laura Ensler, Director, FirstStepNYC Leadership Institute
  • Ina Solomon, Education Administrator, Instruction and Performance, DOE Division of Early Childhood Education
  • Helen Frazier, Master Teacher, FirstStepNYC
  • John Borrero, Director of Education and Disabilities, Administration for Children’s Services

laura_sophia_tweed_june17 ece_panelists_june17

Tuesday, May 13th, 2014 – This date marks the launch of the FirstStepNYC Leadership Institute. The first cohorts of early childhood leaders from the Department of Education and SCO Family of Services gathered to learn about how Powerful Interactions will help to shape each of their unique experiences with the Leadership Institute. These initial cohorts of Leadership Institute participants will help to shape the future of the Institute as it extends throughout New York City.

Thursday, March 20th, 2014 – The FirstStepNYC Leadership Institute invited leaders in early education across NYC Department of Education District 23 for a networking event. Sophia Pappas, Executive Director of Early Childhood with the DOE and Sherry Cleary of the CUNY Early Childhood Professional Development Institute were key note speakers at the event. Follow-up and future networking events will be schedule to build more relationships between leaders across District 23 and the whole of New York City. Below are photos of the event


Statewide Infant and Toddler Conference 
January 12 & 13, 2015 | Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel, Poughkeepsie, NY | More info

Conference Goal:  Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the dyadic approach to infant development through relationship based practice involving parent-child, caregiver-child and parent-caregiver dyads. Prevention strategies will be discussed and taught.  Training techniques will be highlighted.  All materials will be provided as part of the registration fee.

Audience: Infant and toddler program leaders, trainers and supervisors, health care consultants, Early Intervention specialists, mental health providers, family support staff, social workers and other professionals who work with infants, toddlers and their families.


Seize the Moment: Rise to the Challenge of Pre-K
January 28, 2015 | Columbia University Teachers College, New York City | More info

Conference Goal: The conference is designed to be a source of both inspiration and
direction. Come hear the latest thinking on issues big and small – all related to Pre-K! You’ll learn about policies that undergird high-quality Pre-K programs, the critical importance of a play-centered curriculum, ways to support language and literacy development, inclusive education at the Pre-K level, and more! You’ll learn from some of the nation’s top experts on Pre-K education as well as from educators who work every day alongside kids and their

Audience: This conference is designed for teachers, directors, policy-makers,
administrators, parents, and researchers.


NYU Steinhardt Education Policy Breakfast Series
March 6 & May 1, 2015 | NYU Kimmel Center, New York City|  More info

The NYU Steinhardt Education Policy Breakfast Series brings together policy leaders, legislators, business people, heads of corporations, foundations and advocacy organizations, university faculty, and school superintendents for an informed, spirited discussion about contemporary educational issues at both the local and national levels. This year, the series will address the topic of early childhood education, and will look at the key issues of accessibility, quality, and affordability.

Friday, March 6, 2015 – Early Childhood Education: Improving and Assessing Quality

Friday, May 1, 2015 –  Affordability and Sustainability in Early Childhood Education: Global Lessons for New York


12th Annual Young Child Expo & Conference
April 22-24, 2015 | Wyndham New Yorker Hotel, New York City | More info

Conference Goal: The 12th Annual Young Child Expo & Conference 2015,  a joint project of Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education and Los Niños Training, has a simple goal – to provide useful information to professionals and parents in order to help all young children learn, grow and reach their full potential.  In one unique event, this conference integrates learning about typically developing children as well as those with special needs, including autism.

Audience: The onference brings over 1200 people together across all kinds of programs, disciplines, and interest areas from speech pathologists to parents, to those working in children’s museums, day care centers, preschools, and those working with children who have autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or other special needs.


Teachers College, Columbia University 32nd Annual Winter Roundtable on Cultural Psychology and Education
February 13 & 14, 2015 | Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City | More info

Note: While this conference does not specifically focus on early education, there are many topics of interest to professionals working with underserved communities and communities of color.

Conference Goal: The Winter Roundtable is the longest running continuing professional education program in the United States devoted solely to cultural issues in psychology and education. This year’s theme, “#hoodiesup2015: breaking cycles of violence, building alliances, mobilizing resources”, celebrates 32 years of accomplishments, while beholding the promise of fighting social injustice by leaders in the fields of cultural psychology and education. The program will emphasize research and interventions in community, school, and family settings, as well as individual development, regarding a wide range of topics, including language, literacy, access, wellness, cultural values, and experiences with oppression and discrimination.

Audience: The Winter Roundtable will continue its tradition of bringing together scholars, practitioners, researchers, social change agents and students interested in the intersections between race, ethnicity, social class, gender, sexual orientation, and religious affiliation in psychology and education.

Other Leadership Opportunities

Free Webinar: Managing Learning Through Learning Profiles
February 3, 2015, 6:00 PM EST | Register now

Presented by the National Institute for Student-Centered Education’s (NISCE).  Everyone process learning in a variety of ways. Explore how to harness students’ learning profiles for powerful learning experiences no matter the class size or course time by attending this session.

As a participant you will:
  • Outline ways to better understand learning profiles and their value.
  • Review methods for data collection for using Learning Profiles effectively.
  • Explore examples for using learning profiles to support content, process, and products.


Exchange Magazine – Emerging Leaders in Early Care and Education
Application Deadline: February 1, 2015 | Application

Exchange magazine is targeting its May/June 2015 issue to feature emerging leaders in the field of Early Care and Education. One selected leader will be featured on the Exchange cover and in the cover story. Several others will also be pictured and their stories told in the cover feature. And all leaders who complete the application process and are selected will be included in the online version of the article.


Free Webinar: Empowering Student Voice Through Differentiated Instruction
February 9, 2015, 6:00 PM EST  | Register Now

Student engagement is critical for effective achievement. Differentiating instruction based on interests enables students to be a collaborative partner in their learning experiences. Gather ideas for using effective methods to raise your student achievement with engaged learners by attending this session.

As a participant you will:
  • Identify the importance of understanding the purpose of student voice via their interests.
  • Explore examples of using student interests to support student voice and learning.
  • Reflect on the approaches to incorporate into practice.
Skip to toolbar