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Contract for Excellence -- 2011-12

The City School District of Albany's 2011-12 Contract for Excellence strives to improve student achievement in four district schools and build the capacity to serve students in high-needs schools across the district.


New and expanded program opportunities focus on services to students at Albany High School, William S. Hackett Middle School, North Albany Academy and Giffen Memorial Elementary School, all of which have been cited by New York state as needing improvement. The district has targeted 79 percent of the contract funds for these schools.


District-wide, the 2011-12 Contract for Excellence commitment is $137,086. That will support:

  • The salary for the instructional supervisor for English language arts; and

  • A half-time (.5 FTE) position of literacy coach. The position will help ensure implementation of Common Core Learning Standards and emphasize instructional delivery, classroom management and assessment.

All Contract for Excellence programs support the Regents Reform Agenda from cradle to career. The district is committed to retaining its 600-seat full-day prekindergarten program. Two prekindergarten teachers will be funded through the Contract for Excellence as part of this program -- one at Giffen and one at Delaware Community School. Also, reducing the size of kindergarten and first-grade classes at Giffen and North Albany Academy will provide more personalized attention and increased intervention opportunities. 


English-as-a-second-language (ESL), math and literacy programs are led by instructional supervisors that evaluate teachers, provide on-the-job professional development, implement new performance standards for students with limited English proficiency and align and implement Common Core Learning Standards throughout the district. They also oversee comprehensive education plans in schools the state has designated as in need of improvement, in corrective action or as persistently lowest-achieving.


ESL teachers have been added to those schools with high refugee and immigrant populations to help implement the new performance standards for students with limited English proficiency. The district is committed to the instructional coaching model to ensure rigor and implementation of the Common Core Learning Standards, with an emphasis on instructional delivery, classroom management and assessment. Three of the district’s instructional coaches will be funded by the Contract for Education.  


Among the challenges that exist within the district are the performance needs of students at Albany High and Hackett. To help these schools raise achievement for all students, the Contract for Excellence will support several positions at the two schools.


At Albany High, the 2011-12 contract commitment is $538,452. It will support:

  • Increased time on task through staffing in math, reading, social studies and special education. It also will provide funding for a social worker and allow the school to continue to contract for services from Parsons Child and Family Center.

  • English language learners, with a portion of the salary for the ESL instructional supervisor.

At Hackett, the 2011-12 contract commitment is $393,180. It will support:

  • Increased time on task through funding for a home-school coordinator. It also will allow the school to continue to contract for services from Parsons and Catholic Charities.

  • High-school and middle-school restructuring through partial support of the school improvement manager position.

  • English language learners, with a portion of the salary for the ESL instructional supervisor and one full-time ESL teacher. 

The contract plan targets students with the greatest educational need as identified on the Educational Need Matrix provided by the state Education Department. 


Contract for Excellence regulations indicate that the contract plan should result in at least a 10 percent gain in the number of “target-group students” that meet state standards for academic progress. The target-group students are those at the four identified schools that did not meet their benchmark for annual progress, denoted by the state Education Department as Adequate Yearly Progress.


You are invited to share your questions, concerns or comments regarding the 2011-12 Contract for Excellence. You may submit your comments, in writing, to the superintendent of schools. Please send your feedback by Oct. 18 via mail, to:


Raymond Colucciello, Ed.D.

City School District of Albany

1 Academy Park
Albany, NY 12207


The district will hold a public hearing on the Contract for Excellence on Thursday, Oct. 6 from 6-6:30p.m. at Albany High School, 700 Washington Avenue.


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