Brooklyn Democratic Sen. Roxanne on Monday hosted a virtual town hall meeting on K-12 and higher education for constituents in her district.
Guyanese-born Persaud, who represents the 19th Senatorial District in Brooklyn, said the meeting took place on Facebook Live.
She said the first panel focused on higher education with a presentation on state-administered loans and grants by Dr. Guillermo Linares, president of the NYS Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC), and Vice President Elsa Magee, who then answered various questions submitted by constituents.
Participants then heard from Tanjila Rahman, director of Community Affairs for the NYC Department of Consumer Affairs, along with Community Affairs Associate, Michelle Beliz who offered several financial education resources and tools to foster informed borrowing.
Persaud said the second panel, which focused on K-12 education, began with a presentation by Anthony Harmon, director of the UFT Dial-A-Teacher Program, which offers supplemental phone-based assistance to any K-12 student across New York City.
Persaud then welcomed NYC Department of Education Deputy Chancellor Adrienne Austin for a presentation on the department’s current initiatives to implement remote learning at K-12 schools across the City of New York.
She said Austin “answered many questions on behalf of students and parents in SD19 (Senatorial District 19).”
“During these unprecedented times, I looked forward to partnering with the NYC Departments of Education and Consumer Affairs to host an online information session about our public schools and student loan debt for those in higher education,” said Persaud, whose district comprised Canarsie, East New York, Brownsville, Mill Basin, Sheepshead Bay, Bergen Beach, Marine Park, Flatlands, Mill Island, Georgetown, Ocean Hill and Starrett City.
She said the panel discussed and answered questions on school readiness, resources and requirements during this pandemic and in the future.
With student loan debt being “a tremendous burden on students and families,” the senator said how to ease this burden was discussed and resources offered.
She said panelists addressed the concerns of parents and students and other community partners.
“It is important that we continue to address the concerns of the community,” Persaud said.