Who is Distinguish, and why is he important?

Rockaway Beach, NY –  We have focused on big-name stars and how they are an influence in our communities; but we need to start looking at the advocators within our community that are there to do for the people.  One gentleman Henry Gray is no mystery to the public. Henry Gray aka Distinguish, originally known for his poetic style that leads him to a place of a piece in the mind because he like most people was ready to give up on life.  He isn’t one for titles or wanting to be recognized with big accolades.  Henry just wants people to understand his worth and his purpose while he is continuously helping others.

Henry started using his poetic forum to invite other artists to speak out about life in poetry fashion.  He used a platform called Bars N the Barbershop, where the artists would perform in various barbershop locations.  This platform gives an opportunity for talents to be shared that otherwise might not have been noticed or was still trying to find a way to market themselves.  Henry expanded this platform to the United Kingdom and gave the performers there an opportunity to compete and perform against each other. When they reached a certain level and had high sales, they were flown to the United States to be a part of a show that is part of his network, under Disnetwork Inc.  This allows peoples voices to be heard and bring positivity to the youth and hip-hop community.  The show is actually going on the road because April 6 starts the beginning of the tour.

Henry is also behind the face of Dad Hats & BowTies.  The purpose of this platform is a podcast journey that speaks about social justice and media, movie reviews, new in fashion and some other hot topics.  This platform also engages with A, B, C list celebrities within the industry of music and business today.  Henry and his partner are looking to expand this network as well, that will allow intellectuals, hosts and creatives to be a part of the plan.

The Rockaways Are Getting An Upgrade



Rockaway Beach, NY – Rockaway Beach is one of the many communities that make up Far Rockaway, NY.  Recently, the Mayor approved upgrades and structural renovations to improve the area.  After the beating, the Rockaways took after Sandy with drainage problems and flooding an upgrade was necessary.  Each community in Far Rockaway has its own phase.  Rockaway Beach is considered to be part of phase 3 which is called Sandy13.  This particular project started in 2018 and will be completed by June of 2020.  The New York City Department of Design and Construction and the Perfetto Contracting Co. Inc. are behind the work being done in the Rockaways.  The purpose of this project is to upgrade old and damaged drainage and sewer systems.  The cost of this project is worth $25 million.

Due to this project, people in the community have an understanding but it’s causing congestion with traffic, street closures, and rodents are appearing.

The community construction liaison, Erich DeSuza, keeps everyone within the community up to date on what is happening and the improvements that are taking place.

Some of the residents of Rockaway Beach had this to say;

“The construction is definitely inconvenient, but I do think it’s necessary in order to improve our roads,” says Tarin Donatien.

Not everyone has a positive message; a gentleman who did not want to disclose his name stated, “they are always ripping up the streets and they don’t fix it properly, I’m tired of the construction”!

And there are others that play the fence, like Logan Evans who stated: “for where I reside at that draining system was not in place, therefore this why we were flooded out”.

“So, I think it’s very necessary but yet at the same time it’s very inconvenient,” said Logan.

A mother on her way to work stated she is stuck in traffic for at least 10 minutes when they block the street off because of the big bulldozer truck that is moving.

Although some people are against the construction and congestion, others are happy that they are finally fixing the sewer system to protect them from flooding.

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Charter Schools, is there a difference?

Rockaway Beach, NY – In today’s society the educational system is very important to the parents.  There are different types of schools that parents can choose from when it comes to their children like private, public and charter schools.

Public charter schools are really public schools that receive special funding and they aren’t governed by the same rules and regulations as a traditional public school.  Charter schools are overseen by a group or organization under a lawmaking contract.  With charter schools, they are exempt from state laws and local rules as long as they abide by the rules sanctioned by the charter schools.

The purpose of public charter schools is to enhance educational reform and allows the parents to have better school choices for their children’s education.

Latoya Griffin parent of Takayren, a freshman in high school, has a different kind of view regarding charter schools.  Latoya had to pull her daughter out of  Pave Academy Charter school.


Photo Credit : Unknown

Yellow bus parked outside PAVE Academy Charter School.


According to the data on Pave Academy Charter School, they are doing okay.  Their rating is a bit low in comparison to other schools within District 15, but they are not the worst school.

Griffin stated, “I use to like charter schools until after I had to take my child out!”

“I had to take her out because once I was informed that my child might need additional help in like certain subjects like math and with her reading and speech, she wasn’t getting the help or assistance needed to perform in order to move to the next grade level,” said Griffin.

The school was unavailable for questions just to understand why one of their students weren’t receiving the extra help in order to help the student prepare for the next grade.

Rashaida-PAVE-SE-Photo-webTeacher helping the students.

“My child was not happy anymore, she didn’t want to go to school anymore and so for that reason, I took her out and put her back in public school. She left Pave Academy Charter school and went to the local public elementary school, graduated and went to junior high and now is in high school and she’s doing great” said Griffin.

Because of charter schools, public school attendance has dropped by 0.6 million during the fall of 2005 to the fall of 2015.  Although this one concerned mother, charter schools are still doing a great job where traditional public schools have fallen short.

For further information on public schools and charter schools please click here for more insight.

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