COORDINATOR OF CURRICULUM INFUSION & DIVERSITY, OFFICE OF CULTURALLY & LINGUISTICALLY RESPONSIVE INITIATIVES, BUFFALO PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Niya Sosa is a Coordinator for Curriculum Infusion and Diversity within the Office of Culturally & Linguistically Responsive Initiatives in Buffalo Public Schools. She is a native New Yorker, raised in Queens, New York up until enrolling at The University at Buffalo in which she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood. Shortly after graduating, she started her career in teaching at a special education therapeutic day school. Her work with students with disabilities prompted her to pursue her graduate studies in Special Education at Canisius College. During Niya’s ten years of teaching special education in Buffalo and Maryland, she returned to school to study Curriculum and Instruction, with a concentration in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
Starting in 2017, outside her scope of teaching special education, Niya began developing curriculum and teaching for My Brother’s Keeper Male Academy for 7th and 8th grade scholars in Buffalo Public Schools. After realizing the significant lack of representation of people of color in the curriculum and textbooks, Niya quickly developed a passion for the work and this became the onset of her journey into culturally responsive teaching practices and curriculum development. She became a Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Teaching facilitator for the District and co-developed a book study course for educators, based on Dr. Christopher Emdin’s book, For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood.
Niya’s current work as Coordinator for CLRI, allows her to engage with scholars, educators, parents, community members, District staff and administrators within the Buffalo Public Schools community in various capacities, which include professional development experiences, scholar programs, book studies and curriculum development. Currently, she is pursuing her Educational Leadership degree at Canisius College.