UNION CITY (Wednesday, October 17, 2007) – Students interested in pursuing careers in the culinary arts will have a unique opportunity to study, train and gain practical experience when the New Haven Unified School District opens the East Bay
Culinary Arts Institute.

Classrooms, training kitchens and a full-service, public restaurant are planned for the $5.28 million facility, to be built on the campus of James Logan High School. The Board of Education on Tuesday night approved a resolution authorizing the District to seek $2.64 million in state matching funds for construction of the 8,513-square-foot facility. The remainder of funds will come from Measure A, a $120 million bond approved by New Haven voters in 2003.

“The East Bay Culinary Arts Institute is another example of how our District is taking seriously our mission to develop and empower all of our students – including those with specific interests and goals – to be productive, responsible and successful citizens,” Superintendent Dr. Pat Jaurequi said. She thanked Executive Director of Operations Enrique Palacios for his efforts to make the Institute a reality.

“We are planning to provide a very unique opportunity for our students,” Mr. Palacios said. “I’ve seen similar programs, but I don’t know how many are tied so directly to the school district or that have a public restaurant on a high school campus.”

The East Bay Culinary Arts Institute is designed to serve 500 students, including students from Logan and other local high schools that are part of the Mission Valley Regional Occupational Program and students from the New Haven Adult School. The facility, to be built on the corner of Alvarado-Niles Road and Hartnell Street, will feature a 75-seat restaurant where students will prepare and serve meals to paying customers under the guidance of a professional chef.

Construction is expected to begin in the summer of 2008.

Earlier this month, the California Department of Education approved the District’s application to build the Institute under the state’s Career Technical Education Facilities program. The program is funded by Proposition 1D, an educational facilities bond passed by California voters in November 2006.

Associate Superintendent for Education Services Carnell Edwards and New Haven Adult School Principal Nancy George worked with Mr. Palacios to put together the program, along with Rick Herrmann and Shelley Adams of Mission Valley ROP. Logan High teacher Sue Hinojoza did most of the writing on the proposal that was approved by the state, Mr. Palacios said.

Rick La Plante (510) 471-1100, ext. 2310