Olin-Yale-Bayer New Haven Public School Science Program (New Haven Public Schools)

The Olin-Yale-Bayer New Haven Public School Science program of the New Haven Public Schools demonstrates an ability to assemble scientists from diverse disciplines to work with students and teachers on K-12 science projects. The program began six years ago as a partnership among seven schools -- it now encompasses more than forty schools in New Haven. It is a comprehensive program with multiple components that align goals with outcomes. Students learn the scientific method and associated skills by interacting with scientists; the scientists train participating teachers. Students are provided with authentic research opportunities, where teamwork is promoted and self-esteem is enhanced as a result. Older students are able to get academic course credit for their work. This program serves a significant number of minority students. As a result of program activities, student test scores in science have risen. The program has produced a network of mentors that are provided with training and support. More than 130 volunteer mentors participated in the 2000-2001 program. In the 2001 Connecticut science fair, thirty-four projects were based from this program -- those projects involved eleven mentors and forty-eight students (58% minority), seven of whom were medallists and ten of whom received special awards.