ACES Wintergreen Interdistrict Magnet School - Frequently Asked Questions – October 2018

Does ACES still want to operate Wintergreen? Yes. ACES has not waivered on this point. ACES has invested 20 years in time and resources to Wintergreen and we are dedicated to the students, families, faculty and staff that make up Wintergreen and we want to operate Wintergreen for years to come.

Will Hamden be fined by the state if the Hamden town enrollment is 55% or higher at Wintergreen? No. There is no penalty to the town of Hamden by the Connecticut State Department of Education if the Hamden enrollment goes to 55% or higher at Wintergreen per Connecticut State Department of Education Bureau of Choice Programs.

Did ACES reach out to the Mayor to discuss the building options? Yes, ACES reached out to the Mayor’s Office to discuss the building options. During the month of October, they have met and are in discussion regarding the building options.

Does ACES charge Hamden for the costs of providing special education services to Hamden students? Yes. The Connecticut State statute gives magnet schools the authority to charge back to districts the cost for services for students with special needs who attend a magnet school. ACES has delivered these services since it began operating magnet schools without charging services back to districts. Cuts to the state magnet school grant over the years forced ACES to begin to charge districts for the services. ACES only began to charge districts for the services being provided for students with special needs in the 2016-17 school year. For the 18 years prior districts have saved on the costs of all the students with special needs who attended Wintergreen Magnet school. Hamden has benefitted greatly since it has always had been the largest percentage of the school population.

Does it cost Hamden more money to send students to Wintergreen? No. The 2018-19 per pupil expenditure for a Wintergreen student is $11,872 = ($7307 State Magnet Grant + $4565 Local Tuition). This means the actual cost per student to Hamden is $4,565 which is $14,221 dollars less than their 16-17 per pupil expenditure. The (2016-17) per pupil expenditure for Hamden was $18,786 (Connecticut State Department of Education. (2018). 2016-17 Net Current Expenditures Per Pupil. Retrieved from The town of Hamden will have to absorb the full cost of those students currently at Wintergreen.

Does Hamden lose state funding on students they send to Wintergreen? No. Funding to towns is calculated by an Educational Cost Sharing (ECS) formula. Part of that formula takes into account town enrollment. Hamden is allowed to count every student who attends an interdistrict magnet school in their total enrollment even though the student is not being educated in a Hamden public school. This was done by the state to incentivize towns to participate in magnet schools and school choice.

If Hamden takes the school back, can Hamden pull their students back to district? No, the parents have the right retain their seats in Wintergreen. Students who are not currently enrolled may apply through the Magnet choice program.

Will ACES maintain a Wintergreen program locally? Yes, ACES is committed to maintaining the program in one of the local towns if need be and will work on solving transportation needs.

Is ACES financially solvent? Why are they selling buildings? Yes, ACES is financially healthy. We are selling properties that will be vacant due to new construction of our high school on Leeder Hill and to economize the extra office spaces we have vacant. This shows fiscal responsibility on ACES part.



Who We Serve

Wintergreen is a K-8 school that serves over 600 students from our partner districts: Hamden, Meriden, New Haven, Wallingford and Woodbridge.  Students can also enroll through the Magnet School Parent Choice Program.

What Makes WIMS Special...

  • Technology integration including one-to-one iPads and Chromebooks for all students
  • Curriculum enriching field trips K-8
  • Arts Integration
  • Two specials periods for all students daily
  • Students play a band instrument beginning in grade 5
  • String lesson opportunities begin in grade 3

    ACES Wintergreen Interdistrict Magnet School


  • Two theatrical productions per year
  • National Junior Honor Society grades 6-8
  • Girls and boys Basketball
  • Student Government
  • Student-led Morning Broadcast
  • Studio-based visual arts program including small group art enrichment settings

Partner Districts



New Haven




Current Participating Districts

These students are enrolled through the Magnet School Parent Choice Program. 



East Haven


North Haven



West Haven



Support from and Collaboration with Wintergreen's Educational Partners:

  • Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU)
  • Lincoln Center Education
  • Teachers college, Columbia University
  • Yale University
  • CT Science Center
  • Peabody Museum of Natural History
  • The Shubert Center