All of us at American Structurepoint are so proud to be part of continuing progress at Indianapolis Public Schools, the largest school district in Indiana. Thanks to a strong vision, bold initiatives, and innovative changes enacted by IPS Superintendent Dr. Lewis Ferebee and the IPS School Board, many good things are happening at IPS, which translate into greater opportunities for IPS students. Our $250,000 commitment to make possible additional high-quality science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) curriculum via Project Lead The Way programming is just one example of positive change. Here are three more examples.
Graduation rate hits a 10-year high. The most recent data from the Indiana Department of Education shows that 2015-2016 IPS high school graduation rate is 77 percent, an increase from 72 percent for the 2014-2015 school year, and the highest rate the district has seen in 10 years. It appears that the efforts of graduation coaches – first used in the 2015-2016 school year – played a big part in the progress. Graduation coaches provide tutoring services and other interventions to ensure student achieve their post-secondary goals.
IPS chosen to improve teacher quality. The Indiana Center on Teacher Quality in October selected IPS as one of five school districts and one charter school to implement a process to improve student learning by providing a continuum of instruction from highly effective teachers. Activities will focus on systems and structures to improve teacher quality to meet the academic and behavioral needs of all students.
A new medical/STEM middle school will open next school year. The new school will replicate a popular program currently at Harshman Middle School that has a waitlist of more than 500 students. This will bring more opportunities to students interested in exploring future careers in the healthcare or STEM fields. Students will work together in a STEM-focused curriculum to gather the skills to think critically, solve complex problems, and drive advancements.
Many more positive accomplishments are happening at IPS. We are encouraged with the progress we’ve seen, and we can’t wait to see even more accomplishments in IPS’ future.