Hartford Approves 100 4th Grade Seats

The plan is part of the Sheff v. O’Neill lawsuit settlement.

Thursday, May 3, 2012  |  Updated 4:06 PM EDT


The Hartford Board of Education unanimously approved adding 100 fourth-grade seats, the first step in creating a new STEM magnet school at the Dr. Ramon E. Betances School.

The board resolution included a provision allowing the district to pilot a state Department of Education project that would bring 60 suburban students into the Pk-3 program at the Early Reading Lab at Betances for 2012-2013.

The Betances STEM Magnet School would become the 13th magnet school in Hartford Public Schools. 
Supt. Christina M. Kishimoto said the school was being created in response to a need for additional magnet seats to satisfy the terms of the agreement to settle the Sheff v. O’Neill lawsuit, a racial integration case that led to magnet schools in the first place.
“The plan is to have an attractive, centrally located school by 2013-2014,” Kishimoto said. “All of the current third grade students at the Early Reading Lab would be eligible to move into the new fourth grade at Betances.”

During the school’s start-up year, the 100 seats in the fourth-grade class will be evenly split between Hartford and suburban students to comply with the Sheff mandates.

An operations plan for the full design of the school must be submitted for its approval on or before Sept. 18, 2012.




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