Parents Push for Turning Around Struggling IPS Schools Through New State Law
Innovation schools are helping ensure every neighborhood is home to a great school
Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) is the first district in Indiana to use the Innovation Network Schools law to grow the number of high-quality schools in the district. The law gives IPS additional flexibility and oversight of its schools, while also providing an opportunity for the IPS board to offer different types of learning opportunities to students.
Our parent members recommended in “Every Child, Every Neighborhood” that IPS expand the use of the Innovation Schools law.
- This law is about ensuring more neighborhoods have access to great schools. Right now, IPS has some high-performing schools, but far too few children and families have access to those schools. We need to grow these successful programs specifically in high-poverty neighborhoods so that that many more children receive a quality education.
- This law allows IPS to partner strategically with school operators and great principals to offer more diverse learning opportunities. An innovation school receives district funding and is ultimately responsible for students’ success. IPS can partner with other organizations, including charter schools, to create innovation schools that remain part of the district’s portfolio.
- This law can prevent state intervention of chronically low-performing schools. It allows intervention in chronically low-performing schools before they require a takeover by the State of Indiana (as required by law after four years of an “F” grade).
- This allows for the replication of existing district programs with a proven record of success. It would help sustain programs such as Project:RESTORE – a turnaround program created by two IPS teachers that has resulted in tremendous achievement gains for students. The current system makes replication of this program extremely challenging.