January 20, 2011  • Education Innovation Forum and Expo

The New Haven Public Schools (NHPS) has committed to ambitious goals through the New Haven School Change initiative, which aims in five years to close the gap between the performance of NHPS students (over 80% minority and almost 80% qualify for free and reduced lunch) and Connecticut’s state-wide average, cut the dropout rate in half, and to ensure that every graduating student has the academic preparation and the financial resources to attend and succeed in college.

As a key strategy for achieving these goals, NHPS will implement the TALENT Program, a systematic set of practices and strategies that will strengthen human capital management broadly, and specifically the district’s need to strengthen the supervision and coaching of teachers in our schools. The Program will operate by importing the key dimensions of the teacher and principal talent system from Achievement First (AF), a nationally recognized, high-performing charter management organization. In so doing, the project will enable the execution of the landmark New Haven teacher’s contract and evaluation process developed in collaboration with the New Haven Federation of Teachers (NHFT). As such, the TALENT program represents a groundbreaking consolidation of district, union, and charter practice, focused not on policy disputes, but instead on the concrete and specific practices that develop and enable outstanding teachers and principals thereby transforming student achievement results.

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