New Haven School Superintendent Dr. Reginald Mayo announced Thursday he will retire at the end of the school year. Mayo has been a part of the New Haven School district for 46 years, the last 21 as superintendent.
“I started substituting and found that I loved what I was doing, felt great about myself for some reason, just loved to see the twinkle in kids' eyes when they really got it,” said Dr. Mayo.
He loved making a difference in those kids' lives. In his two decades as superintendent, Dr. Mayo has changed the New Haven school system. He extended kindergarten programs to full-day and expanded early childhood education programs.
“That to me begins the foundation for some of the things that are happening now,” said Dr. Mayo.
Now, the graduation rate has increased, the dropout rate has decreased and test scores have improved thanks to the implementation of magnet schools in the city and programs like New Haven Promise.
“That's the goal, have kids prepared to go to college. It doesn't mean every kid has to go to college, but at least have that young person academically ready to go to college or the world of work,” said Dr. Mayo.
But Dr. Mayo knows there are still challenges facing New Haven's schools.
“We got to get every parent, every parent involved so we can be on the same page when dealing with kids,” he said.
He says he'll continue to help kids, even in his next endeavor.
“You will find me somewhere around kids, mentoring or starting some little group to do some positive things. That's something I would never get away from,” said Dr. Mayo.