3R Initiative

What is the 3R Initiative?

Hamden 3R Initiative Logo

Hamden's Reimagine * Restructure * Results (3R) Initiative was created to address these important issues:

  • Decreasing state funding to towns for education, 
  • Declining enrollment (similar to most other communities in CT),
  • Meeting state guidelines for diversity 
  • Incorporating our own community's values around diversity and inclusiveness.

These are all critical issues facing our town. In 2017, the Hamden Board of Education began discussing these issues and examining ways to reorganize our educational system in a way that can be sustained in the future while being mindful of these important issues.

The BOE and district administration saw and continue to see this important work not as a challenge, but rather as an opportunity to optimize programming and reallocate resources to maximize opportunities for our students, while at the same time creating conditions for a long-term sustainable school system of excellence. 

For more information on updates, progress and history of the initiative, click the tabs below.

3R Updates and Progress

Initiative Progress and Updates

March 5, 2019

At the March 5 Operations Committee meeting, members viewed a presentation by Silver Petrucelli related to building improvements related to the 3R initiative and magnet schools.   Discussion included questions about which schools would be the best equipped to be magnet schools and what kinds of "magnet" topics/structures would attract parents to have their children attend different schools in Hamden. The administration explained that they are in the process of collecting information from parents and school principals in each school community.

February 1, 2019

In the last several weeks, a few letters have been sent to affected families informing them about changes for the next year. This includes a letter to Wintergreen Interdistrict Magnet School families explaining that ACES would not be purchasing the existing building, and that the program would be relocated to a building in North Haven. 

In addition, preliminary work has begun on two construction projects: Alice Peck and West Woods. In the case of Alice Peck Early Learning Center, students will be relocated to Wintergreen Elementary School for the 2019-20 school year while the building is under construction. In the case of West Woods Elementary, discussions continue on the construction project, which is expected to last approximately 18 months. 

December 1, 2018

At the special Board of Education meeting on Thursday, November 29, 2018, the Board of Education voted on the school district's restructuring plan. The following items were approved:

  1. Move 6th grade students from elementary schools to Hamden Middle School
  2. Close and repurpose Church Street Elementary School
  3. Close and repurpose Shepherd Glen Elementary School
  4. Petition the Legislative Council for the transfer of the Wintergreen facility to be incorporated back into the Hamden Public School system
  5. Direct the Superintendent to develop intra-district magnet programs and obtain Board approval for implementation
  6. Direct the Superintendent to develop a districtwide universal pre-K program and obtain Board approval for implementation.

None of the items above are expected to take effect this year or next - the changes will require extensive planning and work with our families and staff.

We recognize that there will be challenges as well as mixed emotions about the changes that will be occurring in our district in the next several years. However, we are confident that together, we can work through challenges and emerge as a stronger community.

Updates will be published here as they are available.

Initiative Progress and Updates

 
May 2019

Information sessions on the 3R Initiative progress and plans were held at two elementary schools (open to all schools).  View the Information Session presentation

April 30, 2019

First meeting of the Board of Education Equity Committee

April 11, 2019

Information session on the 3R Initiative for the Hamden Legislative Council. View the April 11 Presentation

March 5, 2019

At the March 5 Operations Committee meeting, members viewed a presentation by Silver Petrucelli on building improvements related to the 3R initiative and magnet schools.   Discussion included questions about which schools would be the best equipped to be magnet schools and what kinds of "magnet" topics/structures would attract parents to have their children attend different schools in Hamden. The administration explained that they are in the process of collecting information from parents and school principals in each school community.

February 1, 2019

In the last several weeks, a few letters have been sent to affected families informing them about changes for the next year. This includes a letter to Wintergreen Interdistrict Magnet School families explaining that ACES would not be purchasing the existing building, and that the program would be relocated to a building in North Haven. 

In addition, preliminary work has begun on two construction projects: Alice Peck and West Woods. In the case of Alice Peck Early Learning Center, students will be relocated to Wintergreen Elementary School for the 2019-20 school year while the building is under construction. In the case of West Woods Elementary, discussions continue on the construction project, which is expected to last approximately 18 months. 

December 1, 2018

At the special Board of Education meeting on Thursday, November 29, 2018, the Board of Education voted on the school district's restructuring plan. The following items were approved:

  1. Move 6th grade students from elementary schools to Hamden Middle School
  2. Close and repurpose Church Street Elementary School
  3. Close and repurpose Shepherd Glen Elementary School
  4. Petition the Legislative Council for the transfer of the Wintergreen facility to be incorporated back into the Hamden Public School system
  5. Direct the Superintendent to develop intra-district magnet programs and obtain Board approval for implementation
  6. Direct the Superintendent to develop a districtwide universal pre-K program and obtain Board approval for implementation.

None of the items above are expected to take effect this year or next - the changes will require extensive planning and work with our families and staff.

We recognize that there will be challenges as well as mixed emotions about the changes that will be occurring in our district in the next several years. However, we are confident that together, we can work through challenges and emerge as a stronger community.

Updates will be published here as they are available.

3R History

History of the Hamden 3R Initiative

The Reimagine * Restructure * Results Initiative was created to address these issues:

  • Decreasing state funding to towns for education, 
  • Declining enrollment (similar to most other communities in CT),
  • Meeting state guidelines for diversity 
  • Incorporating our own community's values around diversity and inclusiveness.

These are all critical issues facing our town. In 2017, the Hamden Board of Education began discussing these issues and examining ways to continue to provide an excellent educational system in a way that can be sustained in the future while being mindful of these important issues.

The Board and administration have created an initiative around this work called, "3R - Rethink, Restructure, Results."  We saw and continue to see this important work not as a challenge, but rather as an opportunity to optimize programming and reallocate resources to maximize opportunities for our students, while at the same time creating conditions for a long-term sustainable school system of excellence. 

For more information on history of the initiative, view our 3R Initiative Legacy Page.

History of the Hamden 3R Initiative

The Reimagine * Restructure * Results Initiative was created to address these issues:

  • Decreasing state funding to towns for education, 
  • Declining enrollment (similar to most other communities in CT),
  • Meeting state guidelines for diversity 
  • Incorporating our own community's values around diversity and inclusiveness.

These are all critical issues facing our town. In 2017, the Hamden Board of Education began discussing these issues and examining ways to continue to provide an excellent educational system in a way that can be sustained in the future while being mindful of these important issues.

The Board and administration have created an initiative around this work called, "3R - Rethink, Restructure, Results."  We saw and continue to see this important work not as a challenge, but rather as an opportunity to optimize programming and reallocate resources to maximize opportunities for our students, while at the same time creating conditions for a long-term sustainable school system of excellence. 

For more information on history of the initiative, view our 3R Initiative Legacy Page.

3R Legacy Page (Older Info)

Hamden 3R Initiative:    LEGACY PAGE

Information contained on this page reflects 3R Initiative resources, presentations and efforts prior to the November 29, 2018 final determination by the Hamden BOE. Current information on the 3R intiiative progress can be found on the Hamden 3R Initiative Implementation page.

Overview

In the past several years, most school districts in Connecticut have experienced declining enrollments. The state legislature is wrestling with a challenging budget situation for the years ahead, and this likely means fewer resources for school districts across the state. Both of these factors affect Hamden Public Schools. 

In addition, we have work to do to ensure that our schools uphold our values around diversity and inclusiveness that are part of what makes Hamden a great community. As people have moved and neighborhoods have developed, we must reconsider school zone boundaries, especially for some schools that have reached levels of imbalance in student diversity beyond state guidelines. Read the letter from the CT State Department of Education related to diversity in Hamden Schools.

In 2017, the Hamden Board of Education began examining these issues. The Board and administration see this important work not as a challenge, but rather as an opportunity to optimize programming and reallocate resources to maximize opportunities for our students, while at the same time creating conditions for a long-term sustainable school system of excellence. By planning proactively, we can design systems for the future where we may see less funding from the state.

Goals

Five goals drive the Board's work on this initiative:

  1. Move 6th grade from elementary to middle school – To ensure Hamden students receive the broad offerings of a secondary experience, particularly in lab science and world language, our students will be better served by a grades 6-8 middle school, as is the practice in many Connecticut middle schools.
  2. Scale use of facilities to address declining enrollment trends; Use resources more efficiently – Some of our elementary schools are becoming underutilized resulting in the opportunity to consolidate. Shifting locations and resources will provide a greater chance to allocate existing resources for improved programming and services to students.
  3. Incorporate Wintergreen School into Hamden Public Schools – This beautiful building and propertyowned by the Town of Hamden, could be a great asset for our school system. Some of our existing school buildings are not as modern in their design, which limits our use of them, and others currently require significant and costly structural improvements.
  4. Create sensible attendance zones that more closely reflect our demographics and meet state regulations for diversity – The current attendance zone map for Hamden elementary schools has not had significant changes in more than twenty years, while populations have shifted over this same period of time. As a result, our attendance zones no longer meet state requirements and our own benchmarks for diversity. In addition, more sensible attendance zones could reduce transportation costs.
  5. Provide opportunities for greater financial sustainability – The Hamden Board of Education is committed to proactively addressing the impact of declining enrollment, less State and Federal funding, and the higher level of needs of students and families. If we take the necessary steps to address these trends head on, we will be in a position to allocate dollars to improve programs and buildings across the district.

Two resource agencies with expertise in school system funding and planning have been retained to assist in this strategic planning effort: District Management Group (DMG) and Milone & MacBroom(Past/Archival presentations to the Board of Education by DMG and Milone & MacBroom are included below under the Timeline section of this page.) They are assisting with collection and analysis of demographic and other data as well as in providing tools and supports to help the Board and administration make the most beneficial and informed decisions. Preliminary work on the "Hamden 3 Rs Initiative: Rethink, Retructure, Results" has included in-depth demographic and enrollment studies for Hamden, as well as examination of research-based economic models for shifting resources to better meet our needs - both today and in the future. 

This Webpage will include presentations, documents and other updates on the "Hamden 3 Rs Initiative" as they are available.

 

Supporting Materials / Other Resources

Current Student Attendance Zone Map  (Click for printable, larger version.)

 

Initiative Timeline 

The following information describes the timeline of our work, and includes viewable presentations when available.


3R Initiative Quick Links