The Microsociety Magnet School in New Haven is one of two middle school programs closing down just weeks before a new school year begins.
The New Haven school district has announced its plan to close two middle school programs, displacing nearly 100 sixth-through-eighth graders.
A $3.5 million deficit is forcing the city to cut middle school programs at the Microsociety Magnet School and the Lincoln-Bassett School, according to the school district.
Forty-eight students at Microsociety and 40 at Lincoln-Bassett are now without a plan.
Marquita Pittman, the mother of a seventh-grader at Microsociety, was outside the school Thursday afternoon trying to come up with a plan B.
"I’m frantic. I’m at work, what am I supposed to do? So I left work to come here and fill out paperwork to look at all the listing of schools," Pittman said.
New Haven School Superintendent Garth Harries said the schools "have significantly under-enrolled middle school populations."
Harries said the displaced students will be moved to other schools in the district where they’ll get a better education.
"We have room in many of our middle schools around the district, so we are able to offer choice to parents," Harries said.
Parents can select four school choices out of a list of about 15 schools. Pittman is trying to research all of them in a short period of time.
"I need to do my legwork of what school is going to be good for him," Pittman said of her son. "He’s been at this school for the last three or four years, so I have a rapport with the principal, with his teachers, so now I have to build another rapport."
As for the teachers affected at the respective schools, they won’t be losing their jobs. They’ll also be relocated to other schools in the district.
"We’re fortunate in New Haven; we have a fairly large system where there’s always vacancies due to retirements, job changes, that type of thing," said David Cicarella, president of the New Haven Federation of Teachers.
Teachers and students alike will have to make a quick transition as the new school year gets underway.