SDE: Priority School Program

Priority School Program

In 1983, the State Board of Education requested $2 million for a new state grant for school districts with the greatest academic need. The new grant became known as the Priority School District Program (PSD). Within the context of the need for increased educational equity and excellence, the narrative explanation of the proposal stated:
“Although it is impossible to measure all outcomes of schooling, student achievement is viewed by many to be the critical determinant of the success of an educational program. Certain elements can enhance a district’s educational program and thereby contribute to the improvement of student achievement. The purpose of this grant is to allocate additional resources to districts needing assistance to allow them to include these elements in their educational programs.”
The emphasis remains on improving the quality of education available and focuses on funding any of the following initiatives: (1) the creation or expansion of innovative programs related to dropout prevention; (2) early reading intervention programs which include summer and after-school programming; (3) the enhancement of the use of technology to support instruction or to improve parent-teacher communication; (4) initiatives to strengthen parent involvement in the education of children and parent; and (5) for purposes of obtaining accreditation for elementary and middle schools from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
The PSD districts for the 2013-2014 school year are:
East Hartford
New Britain
New Haven
New London
*Transitional district - in its third and last year of phase out.
Priority School District Information
Summer School Grant
Section 10-265m of the Connecticut General Statutes establishes grants for summer school programs in PSDs. Funds are to be used for summer school for students in 1-3 who are substantially deficient on the DRA. Additional funds may be targeted for summer school for students in grades K and 4-6 who fail to make progress.
Extended School Hours Program
The Priority School District Extended School Hours Grant, initiated in 1995, provides funds to the school districts identified as priority school districts. The funds are used for academic, enrichment and recreational programs and are based on a formula to the priority school districts. Extended School Hours Programs shall include, but not be limited to, before and after school hours, weekends, summers and school vacations. The first year of the program was completed in June of 1995. Schools that offer Extended School Hours Programs are chosen through a competitive process within each priority school district.
As part of the requirements for the program, priority school districts are responsible for developing a competitive application process that follows criteria set forth in the legislation. This process results in agencies outside the school district (community based, non-profit organizations and other public agencies) having the opportunity to apply to operate programs in the schools. Each eligible Priority School District submits to the Department of Education a “pre-application” or explanation of the process that will be followed in choosing schools where programs will take place and the types of programs that will operate in the schools.

If you have additional questions please contact:

PSD and Summer School Grant Manager
Michael Kent
Education Consultant, Turnaround Office
Telephone: (860) 713-6546

Extended School Hours Grant Manager
Shelby Pons
Education Consultant, Family Support Services
Telephone: (860) 807-2103

Content Last Modified on 5/18/2016 3:39:46 PM