An ambitious youth arts-enrichment center based at Science Park is opening an outpost in Newhallville to help lead an experiment in reversing the fortunes of a struggling school.
The not-for-profit organization, The Connecticut Center for Arts and Technology (ConnCAT), has signed a three-year contract with the city and state boards of education to serve as the lead community group in the “turnaround” effort taking place this comign academic year at Lincoln-Bassett School.
Under a new principal who has replaced 20 of the pre-K-6 school’s 27 teachers, Lincoln-Bassett is testing out Mayor Toni Harp’s ideas of keeping schools open from early in the morning into the night in order to conform more to parents’ schedules and give kids more worthwhile ways to spend their time (not to mention eat more meals). Lincoln-Bassett will stay open from 7:20 a.m. to 6 p.m. The extra hours, filled with enrichment programs, are optional.
Founded in 2012, ConnCAT already runs after-school and summer arts and technology programs for kids out of Science Park. At Lincoln-Bassett, it will run “after-school arts programming for grades 3-6, while addressing the needs of Lincoln-Bassett parents as well as families in the Newhallville community through adult-based classes and workshops,” according to a release issued Monday. “As the lead organization for the initiative, ConnCAT is responsible for managing and coordinating the after-school, parental, and community programming efforts of other community-based organizations at Lincoln-Bassett.”