Democracy School

The City of New Haven’s Democracy School will introduce residents to the structures, services and leaders in the City of New Haven through a series of public information sessions. City officials will introduce their work and lead question and answer sessions aimed at fostering open lines of communication, enabling participants to take full advantage of City resources and empowering residents to become community leaders and advocates.

Democracy School is open to any New Haven resident and must be at least 18 years of age by the start of the first session. Due to an anticipated high volume of applicants and physical restrictions imposed on the program by COVID-19, space will be limited to only 20 students. We, here at the City of New Haven, plan to create an environment where everyone has the opportunity to participate and foster long, impactful and meaningful relationships.

Democracy School Goals:

  • Provide participants with an interactive learning experience that generates dialogue about City services, programs and responsibilities, including day-to-day operations, the challenges of City government, budget process and limitations.
  • Promote partnerships between community and government by providing a forum where local officials and community members can interact and exchange ideas.

Session Details:

The Democracy School will meet Thursdays from 6pm to 8pm for seven weeks via Zoom. Session links will be sent out to accepted participants  





September 10th

Governing the City


September 17th

Economic Development


September 24th

Budget, Finances & Taxes


October 1st

Quality Neighborhoods


October 8th

Community Well-being


October 15th

Public Safety


October 22nd

Youth & Education






Given the breadth of information to be shared, participants should avoid missing sessions. Each person will be required to complete a simple class assignment, which will be further explained when class begins. It can include participating in one of the following over the seven-week period: attend a Board of Alders meeting, attend a Board of Education meeting, attend one of the mayor’s office hours, or attend a committee meeting. After each session, participants will be asked to fill out a brief survey.

Click here for the Democracy School Application.

If you have any questions, please contact Omena McCoy at (203) 946-5892 or