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New Winthrop School Ready To Welcome Students

School will open to students after winter break, become STEM magnet in 2012-2013 academic year

The students and faculty at the have gone through a few changes in scenery in recent years. On Tuesday, they’ll settle into a more permanent location as a new school building opens at 74 Grover Street.

Construction at the site has added onto the existing school structure, renovating the gym and other spaces and expanding the facility to meet its new goal of being a magnet school for science, technology, mathematics, and engineering subjects. Current Winthrop School students in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade will finish this academic year before the STEM magnet program begins in the 2012-2013 academic year.

“Approximately 40 students from the surrounding towns will be coming here as part of that plan,” said Jaye Wilson, principal of Winthrop School.

Each classroom at the school will have state-of-the-art equipment, including SMART Boards, four student computers, two teacher’s computers, and ceiling projectors. The building is the first of the to have a dedicated arts space, with a kiln built into the classroom. The school’s features also include two science labs, two computer labs, a greenhouse, rooftop and raised bed gardens, and trellises.

Assistant Superintendent Christine Carver said the school will offer standard non-STEM classes, but that they will incorporate a STEM theme. The location of the building is also important, as it is close to the , , and .

“Our students will be done a lot of walking field trips,” said Carver.

Wilson said she hopes the building and its playgrounds will be an asset to the neighboring communities. The school will also contain a school-based health clinic open to the public and accessible by a separate entrance.

Winthrop School students formerly attended classes in modular units on Cedar Grove Ave. before to the building on Beech Drive. Nathan Hale students are now attending classes in the modulars and will remain there until renovation work is completed on the Beech Drive building. The Nathan Hale School will then become a visual and performing arts magnet school.

The new school cost approximately $30 million. It was designed by Tai Soo Kim Partners in Hartford and built by the Fusco Corporation of New Haven.

An open house is scheduled for 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Jan. 21 and 22. One-hour guided tours will run on Jan. 26, Feb. 9 and 23, and March 1, 15, and 29. More information on the magnet school application process is available here.

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