I know them both for many years and here's the best to them and have fun in the Puerto Rico Day Parade tomorrow.
Brian De Vale
Please take a moment to read this article from today's NY Post, share with friends and congratulate our brother Melvin Martinez as sometimes it seems we can't get a bit of Good News in this business.=========
The story is more than a story about baseball -it a tribute to the love of family and community. My Asst. Principal, Melvin Martinez, embodies my belief in Community Schools. He is a product of District 14 where he continues to live, work and he has his two sons enrolled with us at PS 257.
His parents emigrated from Puerto Rico and raised 4 fine sons in Williamsburg long before it became the "oh-so-chic" place it is considered today. His father spent 37 years as a teacher at a local day care where he influenced the lives of countless children and their families. Two of his brothers (Edwin and Steve) continue the family tradition as both educators and sports coaches here in District 14. Another brother is a law enforcement officer in Florida. The Martinez Family runs a Saturday Sports Academy at 257 in the winter FOR FREE and Melvin has been the Varsity Baseball Coach at our local High School Grand Street Campus for the past many years. I have witnessed him on multiple occasions counseling kids on his cell phone ordering them to stay in school while living in places as far away, and as foreign to them, as rural Texas. They are there attending College on Scholarships he helped them to win, on terms he helped negotiate. He has also groomed several students and worked with Major League Baseball scouts to score major league contracts for his players(Dellin Betances NY Yankee, who still attends and participates in our school's Special Olympics- which were founded by Melvin's brother Steve ). Many of his players are Dominican immigrants (ELL's ) and/or the first in their families to apply to college. He not only wins games, but he also demands high grades, gentlemanly behavior and good sportsmanship.
The timing of this victory is awesome!!! The P.S. 257 Marching Band was invited to perform tomorrow at the National Puerto Rican Day Parade. This band was born out of Melvin's idea to create a band as an additional way for kids to earn college scholarships-through music. He noticed years ago that at every college sports event there were always bands playing - and many of the students were attending college for free. When we were lucky enough to become a Magnet School and receive additional funding our band effort went into overdrive. Now he will see the band he created perform at an event he truly loves, the day after becoming the BEST H.S. BASEBALL TEAM IN NYC!!! I know Melvin will be dancing his way up 5th Avenue tomorrow with us as a PROUD Puerto Rican son, husband, father, AP and coach, screaming at the top of his lungs as he does every morning when he walks into the Main Office:
Dios te bendiga!!! Amen, Amen, Amen!!!!! Y Que viva Puerto Rico!!!!
So wave to us tomorrow if you see us on TV, as we crown Melvin our District's own Grand Marshall:
We love you "Uncle Melski" CONGRATULATIONS ON ANOTHER JOB WELL DONE!
Brian and the Entire District #14 Family
The opinions expressed on EdNotesOnline are solely those of Norm Scott and are not to be taken as official positions (though Unity Caucus/New Action slugs will try to paint them that way) of any of the groups or organizations Norm works with: ICE, GEM, MORE, Change the Stakes, NYCORE, FIRST Lego League NYC, Rockaway Theatre Co., Active Aging, The Wave, Aliens on Earth, etc.
I met Melvin in the mid 90's when he started coaching at Grand Street and I was coaching a FK Lane. You could sense that he was going to do an amazing job due to his professionalism, focus and dedication to the kids.
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