CTRA Named National Magnet School of Excellence

CTRA Named National Magnet School of Excellence
Posted on 02/07/2020
Magnet School of Excellence

The Connecticut River Academy (CTRA) is launching National Magnet School Month with a major accomplishment: the high school has been honored as a National Magnet School of Excellence for 2020.

The National Magnet School of Excellence is the highest category of recognition awarded by Magnet Schools of America (MSA.) The award is reserved for schools that have scored best in all facets of the MSA merit award application. In 2019 CTRA was named a “National Magnet School of Distinction” by MSA.

CTRA Principal Tara Amatrudo said the elevation to “excellence” reflects dramatic increases in student achievement and access to early college programming over the past year. More than 83 percent of the school’s students are enrolled in at least one college course at Goodwin University and most students earn significant transferrable college credits before graduating from high school.

“I could not be prouder to have our school’s work recognized by Magnet Schools of America at the national level,” Amatrudo said. “I know that this recognition comes as a result of intentional, whole-hearted work on the part of our educators, scholars, and community. We believe deeply in our special mission as a magnet school and will continue to strive for excellence for our scholars every day.”

CTRA submitted a detailed application to MSA and was evaluated on a wide range of criteria. Categories included significantly raising student academic achievement, promoting racial and socioeconomic diversity, providing integrated curricula and instruction, and creating strong family and community partnerships to enhance the school’s magnet theme. A panel of educators scored each application and deemed CTRA among the elite.

Amatrudo will accept the award on behalf of CTRA at MSA’s national conference in Las Vegas in April.

CTRA's announcement as a school of excellence comes as the nation celebrates National Magnet School Month. Each February, schools of choice are celebrated for their integral role in promoting racial and socioeconomic integration, as well as their theme-based learning that builds upon the individual talents and abilities of all students and prepare them for college and future careers. For CTRA, that means sustainability.

LEARN and Goodwin University cooperatively administer CTRA on Goodwin’s Riverside Campus in East Hartford. The school’s sustainability theme combines studies in environmental science and advanced manufacturing. Students learn about environmental and social issues such as climate change and green energy in the school’s state-of-the-art laboratories and on its own research vessel that brings science classes directly out on the Connecticut River. Students also explore how current developments in technology are shaping the future of our planet with advanced manufacturing.

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