Information fairs showcase New Haven Public School options

New Haven’s resurgent public school system includes the largest magnet school program in the state of Connecticut. Parents can learn more about these magnet schools, as well as public charter schools and ACES programs, at two events in early January.

The Citywide Magnet Fair for New Haven residents will take place on Wednesday, Jan. 5, 6-8 p.m., at the New Haven Athletic Center, 480 Sherman Ave. (next to Hillhouse High School).

There will be information on magnet schools that accept applications from residents both in New Haven and area towns at the Interdistrict Magnet Fair, to be held on Saturday, Jan. 8, noon-2 p.m., at Hill Regional Career High School, 140 Legion Ave.

Yale will be holding an information session on magnet schools on Tuesday, Jan. 11, at the Learning Center. Deborah Breland, New Haven magnet school coordinator, will discuss pre-K through high school options, the application process, eligibility, lottery and deadlines. Applications for the 2011-2012 school year will be available. For information and to register, go to http://learn.caim.yale.edu/lcdb/courses/classinfo.asp?CourseID=533.

In addition, individual magnet schools will hold open houses in the following weeks. There is complete information on the magnet school program, the information fair, open house dates and locations, and the magnet application process at www.newhavenmagnetschools.com.

New Haven’s public schools are in the midst of an ambitious citywide School Change Initiative. This includes the New Haven Promise program (which provides qualifying city students with tuition funds to attend schools in Connecticut) and a nationally recognized school construction program.

“My two daughters attend public school in New Haven and are thriving there academically and socially. I know many Yale parents whose children attend public schools in New Haven and who are equally pleased with the experience,” says Alexander Nemerov, the Vincent J. Scully Professor of the History of Art.

Several media outlets have noted the success of the New Haven renaissance. In October, Bloomberg noted that the city is the nation’s strongest apartment market; in August, the Daily Beast called it one of the nation’s 20 top recession-proof cities; and in June, The New York Times highlighted New Haven’s draw for homeowners. Yale University works with the city to contribute to a strong New Haven.

Longtime New Havener, Provost Peter Salovey, has said, “This small city of 125,000 has some of the best restaurants, theaters, galleries, museums and music venues of any city on the East Coast, and — I would argue — has more cultural and gustatory opportunities than any city of its size in the country.”

Yale has made community investments in downtown arts, culture and retail; provided support for neighborhood homeownership; forged partnerships for economic development and new company creation; and sponsored a wide array of outreach programs with the public schools.

More than 7,500 Yale faculty, staff and alumni live in the city of New Haven. Troy Resch, who stayed in New Haven after graduation from the Yale School of Management in 1997 to start a business and raise his family, says: “We chose to live in New Haven because it is a lively, diverse community full of people committed to making the community better. Two of our three kids are now in public school and the youngest will follow.”

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