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    Office Of The Mayor
    Mayor's Monday Message

    Dear Friends:

    I want to congratulate New Haven Federation of Teachers President David Cicarella who was honored today by the White House as a "Turnaround School Champion of Change," in recognition of his leadership in developing and sustaining New Haven's collaborative approach to School Change. Cicarella was part of a group of 12 educators nationwide recognized by the White House for their leadership in efforts to turnaround low-performing schools.

    New Haven's School Change Initiative has attracted national attention for its comprehensive, collaborative and sustainable approach to school innovation and reform. The New Haven Federation of Teachers have received praise locally and nationally for their leadership in New Haven's collaborative reform efforts, and for assuring that New Haven teachers and educators have a strong and positive voice in the initiative.

    Teachers are absolutely critical to accomplishing our mission of turning around schools and ensuring all our kids have access to the best education possible. Dave understands that and has been a guiding force in bringing teachers into the process of school reform. This award today is a testament to his commitment and the hard work of our talented teachers.

    American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten had this to say about Cicarella's honor and the role of teachers in School Change: "New Haven's success is based on shared responsibility-with the union, city and school leaders acknowledging that collaboration, not top-down dictatorial mandates, yields the best solutions."

    Connecticut Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor also added his praise for Cicarella and New Haven School Change. "David Cicarella has demonstrated that the relationship between teachers' representatives and district management can truly be one that emphasizes collaboration and meaningful reform. Thanks to Mr. Cicarella, Mayor DeStefano, Superintendent Mayo, and other local leaders, New Haven has become a powerful model of change -- a school district where innovative reforms are directly benefiting schoolchildren and inspiring professionals statewide. I salute David for his solutions-oriented approach and his significant accomplishments to date," Pryor said.

    Superintendent of Schools Dr. Reginald Mayo emphasized the central role teachers have played in New Haven School Change. "Great teachers are the key to success when it comes to improving schools. Dave Cicarella has worked from the beginning to empower teachers and have their voices heard. We couldn't have come as far as we have in turning around schools and advancing academic achievement without Dave's determination and the hard work of our teachers," Mayo said.

    Cicarella is the second New Haven educator to be named a "Champion of Change" by the White House. Food Services Director Tim Cipriano received the honor in spring 2011 for his efforts to introduce healthy and locally produced food into city schools.

    Kindergarten Canvass Reaches 651 Doors Saturday

    The Citywide Kindergarten Canvass reached 651 doors last Saturday thanks to the help of 91 New Haven educators and community members who, despite bad weather volunteered their time to help make sure that every kindergarten family has the tools and information to succeed in school this year. Volunteers spoke to 266 families Saturday to answer questions about the start of school, and about simple and important things they can do to help their kindergarteners succeed. Families received a free book as well as information about the ART of School Success. The ART of School Success is a research-based initiative that focuses on the importance of Attending school every day, Reading with your child every day, and setting aside time to Talk to your child every day.

    The canvass resumes Thursday and there is still time to sign up to volunteer by visiting tinyurl.com/kindergarten2012. I'm looking forward to joining the canvass this Thursday!

    City Promotes Safe Affordable Transportation Options for Gateway Students

    The new downtown campus of Gateway Community College will officially open its doors next month, and the City's Department of Transportation, Traffic and Parking has been busy making sure students are aware of the variety of safe, convenient and affordable ways to travel downtown. Last week the City joined Gateway and Elm City Cycling for a free Bike to Work breakfast at the downtown campus to promote Gateway's extensive indoor bike parking facility at their new garage. The facility offers safe indoor parking for 90 bicycles, plus lockers and showers for commuters. In addition to helping promote bicycling as a safe and convenient commuting choice, the City is helping to promote CT Transit options. Gateway students will be provided free CT Transit bus passes for the first 30 days of school.

    With an internationally-renowned arts and theater scene, some of the best restaurants in the country, hundreds of boutique shops and major national chains, nationally-recognized museums, and a network of some of the best academic institutions in the world, New Haven is the best classroom the world can offer. I could not be more excited to welcome Gateway students to downtown, and I look forward to the new positive energy the students will bring.

    City Releases Final Report on the Status of Women and Girls

    The City's Community Services Administration and the Consortium for New Haven Women and Girls have released their final Report on the Status of Women and Girls in New Haven, reporting on six critical areas impacting women's lives, including health, education, economic security, employment, civic engagement and safety. The report will be used as a resource for the City, advocates and researchers in considering future policy initiatives, directives and investments. Take a look a the final report on the CSA website.

    Mayor's Night Out

    I'll be at Betsy Ross Arts Magnet School at 150 Kimberly Avenue at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, August 22 for Mayor's Night Out. Come out and meet with representatives from City departments and programs.

    Contact Name: Elizabeth Benton

    Contact Email: ebenton@newhavenct.net

    Contact Phone: 203-946-8200


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