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    Office Of The Mayor

    New Haven School holds 'prep' rally

    (1/30/2006) NEWS RELEASE

    Monday, Jan. 30, 2006

    Contact: Catherine Sullivan-DeCarlo, (203) 946-8450

    Mayor & Superintendent rally Monday

    for students to excel on CMTs

    Connecticut Mastery Tests moved to March

    NEW HAVEN - Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. and Superintendent of Schools Dr.

    Reginald Mayo joined a spirited rally Monday, Jan. 30, 2006, 11:30 a.m.

    at Wexler-Grant Community School to impart a message that kids can do

    well on the Connecticut Mastery Test.

    This is the first year that all students statewide are taking the

    Connecticut Mastery Tests during the month of March (3/7-3/24) rather

    than September. At the same time, under the requirements of the federal

    No Child Left Behind legislation, school districts are required to test

    third through eighth grade students, rather than just fourth, sixth and

    eighth graders. In New Haven, that means that means about 8,800 students

    are taking the test.

    "In a national climate of increased testing and high-stakes

    accountability, we need to need to give our children a message of

    confidence," said Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. "There is no doubt in my

    mind that our students are smart and capable but those feelings don't

    always translate into taking tests. Our kids need to know that the City

    of New Haven -parents, elected leaders, teachers and principals - are

    100% behind them."

    The rally at Wexler-Grant Community School, 55 Foote St., in the Dixwell

    neighborhood, included the Mayor, Superintendent, Tripper, the mascot

    from the New Haven County Cutters' baseball team, and students and

    parents. Principal Jeffie Frazier distributed book bags to kids and

    t-shirts to parents that read "Wexler Helene Grant Moving from Good to

    Great" with the district's five bold goals imprinted on the back. The

    choir performed.

    Under the New Haven Public Schools' Good to Great strategic plan,

    schools have been giving students mini-assessments in content areas tied

    to CMT objectives every six weeks. The school system has provided

    training from the Center for Performance Assessment to help New Haven

    teachers interpret the student data and adjust instructional strategies.

    The school system is dedicating the month of February to "The Full Court

    Press," a campaign encouraging principals and schools to help kids

    sharpen their test taking and critical thinking skills, and to boost

    self esteem. ###



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