Tag Archive: New Haven Public Schools

  1. NHPS opens up national superintendent search

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    New Haven Public Schools has taken another step towards selecting a new superintendent by opening up a national search for the position.

    After Superintendent Reginald Mayo announced his retirement this past February, New Haven’s Board of Education has been looking for someone to replace him as the top official in the district — a position Mayo held for 21 years. Members of the Board of Education said they hoped to have a new superintendent by June 30.

    New Haven announced that the district will begin a national search for a superintendent by posting a position profile that was created by a combination of thoughts expressed by various stakeholders. The first bullet on the candidate’s profile specifies that the district is looking for a “visible, accessible, and interactive leader who will champion a vision for transformed student outcomes, building on what is working in the current NHPS School Change Initiative and rigorously reexamining what is not.” It also identifies what the district believes to be its top challenges: high school graduation rates, Pre-K programming, inequalities in funding and special education. In addition, the first paragraph of the position profile describes New Haven to prospective superintendents and points to Yale University’s presence in the city as a selling point.

    New Haven Public Schools has also announced that Mayo was honored with a lifetime ‘TAPS’ award, which is awarded to teachers, administrators, parents or support staff who have benefited the district during their tenure.

  2. Twenty-nine Elm City teachers may be fired

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    Twenty-nine teachers in New Haven Public Schools will soon find out if their jobs are safe.

    Based on the district’s new teacher evaluation system, teachers that fail to score above “developing” for a third year in a row are in jeopardy. The system places teachers into five categories, ranging from “needs improvement” to “exemplary.” This year, there are 18 teachers who were placed into the “needs improvement category,” as well as 11 teachers who failed to score above “developing” for a third year in a row.

    By law the district must issue a “nonrenewal” notice by May 1, but nontenured teachers are expected to find out in meetings next week if they will be offered a job next year. They are typically given until the end of the year to improve their performance.

    This punishment will not come without warning. Teachers are notified in November if they are on track to score in the “needs improvement” category, and are given support and finally dismissed only if they fail to show improvement over the course of the year.  Teachers who continually ranked “developing” were also given notices in November and given the chance to improve throughout the year. In the first two years of the program, only 2 percent of the workforce faced unemployment due to these standards.

    In total, 62 teachers, 33 of them tenured, have been removed from New Haven Public Schools system because of the teacher evaluation system rankings.

    A report released in October of 2012 said that 90 percent of teachers in the previous year scored in one of the top three rankings of “exemplary,” “strong” or “effective.”

  3. NHPS superintendent to retire this year

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    After 21 years as the superintendent of New Haven Public Schools, Reginald Mayo has announced that he will retire at the end of this year, effective June 30.

    Mayo’s announcement confirms a previous News report that said the long-time superintendent would retire based on information from City Clerk Ron Smith. Mayo’s primary accomplishments include building the largest interdistrict magnet school program in the state of Connecticut, extending kindergarten school days and remodeling all 37 schools in the district.

    “If I wait for the day to come when I no longer love overseeing this school district and looking out for the 21,000 public school children we serve, I might never retire,” Mayo said. “However, after 46 years of service to New Haven Public Schools, including the last 21 years as your superintendent, it is time for me to move on.”

    His retirement comes on the heels of Mayor John DeStefano Jr.’s announcement that he will not pursue re-election this year. The two worked together on a number of initiatives, including the New Haven School Change Initiative.

  4. New Haven public schools to meet during February break

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    New Haven public schools will meet during February break to make up for the lack of classes during New Haven’s two megastorms this year, according to a Wednesday press release from Abbe Smith, director of communications for New Haven Public Schools.

    Classes will meet next Tuesday, Feb. 19, through Friday, Feb. 22, to make up four days of lost classes in the aftermath of last weekend’s blizzard. Though Yalies started trudging to class today, New Haven public school students have the rest of the week off as the Elm City continues to recover from the biggest storm to hit New Haven in over 100 years.

    So far this academic year, the district has had to cancel 10 days of classes following Superstorm Sandy and last weekend’s blizzard. By law, the school district is required to complete 180 days of school by June 10, and only two snow days had been accounted for in the calendar.

    “We don’t want our students out of school for too long,” said Superintendent of Schools Reginald Mayo in the press release. “We canceled school for a week out of concern for the safety of our students and a need to keep people off the roads during intense snow removal operations. Now it is time for them to get back in the classroom and back to the business of learning.”

    The district will work with the New Haven Federation of Teachers to come up with a plan to reschedule the additional days.