Providence, RI- Mayor Jorge O. Elorza today announced that the Providence School
Board formally approved the hiring of six school culture coordinators at a special
public meeting held at the Providence Public School District’s offices last night.
School culture coordinators represent a new initiative by Mayor Elorza and the
school department to promote a positive school climate and increase student
engagement. The hiring of a seventh and final coordinator is expected to be approved
at the board’s January meeting.

“Providing a supportive and inspiring learning environment is critical for student
success, especially during a challenging time like the middle school years,” said
Mayor Jorge O. Elorza. “I’m thrilled to welcome the new coordinators who will serve
as role models and engage students and community partners in all of our middle
schools.”

Each school culture coordinator will be assigned to one of Providence’s seven public
middle schools, where they will work with administrators on site to leverage
community partners for additional in-school and out-of-school assistance, increase
leadership opportunities for students and offer greater levels of social-emotional
support. In particular, coordinators will be tasked with implementing restorative
justice practices that use facilitated conversations and community service to
understand and repair harm.

School culture coordinators approved by the board include:

* Nerise Beckford-Joly, who has been working as a restorative conference
facilitator with Family Service of Rhode Island.

* Jason Figueroa, a youth program leader most recently serving as an impact
manager for City Year Providence.

* Stephen Larbi, a teen program coordinator for the Boys and Girls Club of
Pawtucket and a member of the Pawtucket Youth Commission.

* Erroll Lomba, a director of youth and justice programs with Rhode Island
for Community and Justice.

* Carina Monge, a career and technical education program coordinator for the
school district.

* Elsie Palmieri, an education advisor who has worked with American Student
Assistance and RI College Crusade.