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January 22, 2018
For More Information Contact:

JP O'Hare

(518) 474-1201



State Education Department Now Accepting Applications for Two New My Brother’s Keeper Grant Programs

$1 Million in Grants Will Create Leadership Opportunities for Students and Support Native American Students

The State Education Department is now accepting applications for two new My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) grants: the MBK Fellows Program and MBK Native American Program. The MBK Fellows grants will provide leadership opportunities to high school juniors, with an emphasis on boys and young men of color. Approved MBK Community Networks are eligible to apply. Grants for the MBK Native American Program are intended to incentivize and support school districts to accept the My Brother’s Keeper initiative and implement a coherent cradle-to-college/career strategy aimed at improving the life outcomes for disadvantaged Native Americans, with emphasis on boys and young men. For this program, the Department will fund grants to eligible school districts partnered with New York State Tribal Nations. Request for Proposals (RFP) for both programs are currently available online. The application deadline for both programs is February 16, 2018.

“The new grant programs build on our previous MBK efforts and expand opportunities for boys and young men of color,” Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa said. “Our continued investment in the lives of these students will allow us to further break down the institutional and societal barriers that often limit their success. This latest $1 million is helping rewrite the future for even more boys and young men.” 

“Every young person is capable of accomplishing great things, but not every young person has the opportunity to do so,” State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said. “The MBK Fellows and MBK Native American Programs will give more students access to mentors, resources, and experiences that will help them graduate from high school on the right track for a bright future.”  

“With these new grants, we are making additional investments in programs and strategies that we know make a real difference in the lives of young people,” Regent Lester Young said. “Mentors, family engagement, and whole-community efforts are approaches that work and have shown to help students not only stay in school but succeed in and outside of school.” 

My Brother’s Keeper Fellows Program

Only approved New York State MBK Community Networks are eligible to apply for the MBK Fellows grant opportunity. An approved Community Network is a partnership between the Office of the Mayor and the School District Superintendent (or the Chancellor in New York City), that has been documented with the Office of Family and Community Engagement as of November 1, 2017. Additionally, for this grant opportunity, each Community Network must secure a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with a local postsecondary education institution, local business, and/or community-based organization.

Through the creation of the MBK Fellows program, 11th grade students, with an emphasis on boys and young men of color, will be provided with an authentic leadership opportunity in local government, education, and/or business. Applicants will select two Fellows who are current 11th graders to participate in the program, which will begin in the spring 2018 semester and continue through the fall semester of students’ 12th grade year. Each MBK Fellow will have a mentor currently employed with one of the partners.

The Fellows will also be a part of a statewide MBK Fellows Workgroup, which will give them the chance to offer input on the creation and implementation of a statewide MBK Mentoring Network. Additionally, the Fellows are expected to attend the Second Annual NYS MBK Statewide Symposium in Albany in April 2018 with their mentors.

Available funding is expected to be $250,000, subject to legislative appropriation, with funds being used between March 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018. The MBK Fellows grant application is available on the RFP website. 

My Brother’ Keeper Native American Program

The MBK Native American Program seeks to increase the academic achievement and college/career readiness of Native American students, with emphasis on boys and young men. Public school districts that are contracted with the NYSED Native American Education Unit for tuition, operating costs, and/or transportation are eligible for funding. Districts will be allocated dollars based on the current count of students within the district who are (a) on an official tribal membership roll of a NYS tribe, or (b) are the child of such an enrolled member, or (c) live on a Federally-Recognized Reservation. New York State tribes include members of the Iroquoian tribes (St. Regis Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca Nation, Tonawanda Band of Seneca, and Tuscarora), the Shinnecock Nation, and Unkechaug Nation.

Additionally, for this grant opportunity, each school district must also secure a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with a local Native American Tribe. Available funding for this year (March 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018) is expected to be $750,000. Eligible districts and their allocations are listed in the following chart:

School District Available Funding
Akron Central School $38,688
Central Moriches UFSD $16,016
Gowanda CSD $75,296
     LaFayette CSD $33,904
     LaFayette CSD for Onondaga Nation School $26,624
LaFayette CSD Total $60,528
Lakeshore CSD $73,632
Massena CSD $47,632
     Niagara Wheatfield $69,264
     Niagara Wheatfield for Tuscarora Nation School $17,264
Niagara Wheatfield Total $86,528
Salamanca CSD $90,272
     Salmon River CS $131,456
     Salmon River CS for St. Regis Mohawk School $64,688
Salmon River CS Total $196,144
Silver Creek CSD $37,440
Southampton UFSD $24,336
Stockbridge Valley CSD $2,704
Tuckahoe Common SD $416
TOTAL $749,632


The application for the MBK Native American grant program is available on the funding announcement website.