Tuesday, July 22, 2014

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City Schools Showcase Programs at School Choice Expo

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Rochester: City Schools Showcase Programs at School Choice Expo
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Rochester schools showcased their programs to parents and students as part of the 3rd annual School Choice Expo at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center.

The event gave schools a chance to give the perfect pitch.

"Just come see us at James Monroe High School," said Assistant Principal Jason Muhammad. "We are building on our strength and embracing new opportunities."

However no matter the slogans, for Terry Jacobs, choosing where her son will spend the 2013-2014 school year comes down to academics.

"Just as a parent, what I'm really concerned with are the ELA and the math scores that a lot of these city schools are just failing and as a parent, I'm really looking at charter schools," said Jacobs.

Next year her son Tyree is heading to seventh grade.

"At first I chose one school but then I see everything around me. It's like I have a billion choices," said Tyree.

City families like the Jacobs had the chance to interact with nearly 55 schools on display, which included a handful of charter schools.

"They're meeting teachers, they are meeting administrators," said RCSD Sr. School Selection Specialist Darryl Kittelberger. "They get to see, by photographs, what schools are doing, exhibits. It's just a wonderful time to be informed about what's going on in the Rochester City School District."

Organizer's say what's new this year is their "Home School Guarantee."

"If you live within a half mile of a neighborhood elementary school you are guaranteed placement in that school. That is not something everybody understands," said Chip Partner, RCSD Spokesperson. "Secondly we have many families that attend Pre-K at one of our neighborhood elementary schools. Those families get the next priority."

The expo brought out hundreds trying to pick the perfect school. For many parents like Frederick Pike, the best choice had just one requirement.

"I want to put her in a school where the teachers care about the students," said Pike.

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