8 things you should know about Indiana education

  1. SCHOOL CLOSING: Impassioned parents and alumni asked Indianapolis Public Schools leaders to slow down and seek more community input before finalizing plans to close three high schools at a community meeting Wednesday. Read more in Chalkbeat, WIBC, CBS 4, and WISH-TV.
  2. MEASURING FAILURE: Indianapolis Public Schools is rolling out a new way for assessing whether schools with low test scores should get extra help — or even restart. The aim is to go beyond test scores to look at deeper information. These seven schools will test the new approach. Read more in Chalkbeat.
  3. DOING AWAY WITH DRAMA: Gov. Eric Holcomb completed his first legislative session as Indiana’s top executive, and he managed to check off every education priority on his list. That hasn’t always been the case for Indiana political leaders. So what’s changed? Well, it has to do with his approach — and probably the goals themselves. Chalkbeat has the story.
  4. YOUNG REFUGEES: Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Sonia Nazario stopped by Shortridge High School to talk to students and educators about the perilous trip children make from Central America to the U.S. to reunite with their parents. Read more in Chalkbeat.
  5. EDUCATING ENGLISH-LEARNERS: Indiana’s state budget, passed last week and signed into law by Gov. Holcomb, sets aside about $32 million for English-language learners, up from about $20 million in 2015. School officials say the best part isn’t just the money — it’s the state showing it is invested in students learning English. Read more from Chalkbeat.
  6. SCHOOL PRAYER: The prayer in school bill passed both legislative chambers last week, and Holcomb signed it into law on Wednesday. But what are the implications for Indiana schools, and does the bill break any new ground? The Indy Star has more.
  7. CHARTER OVERSIGHT: A Monroe County public education advocacy group has sued state leaders and a Bloomington-area charter school because it argues private, religious colleges shouldn’t be able to oversee charter schools, which are funded with state taxpayer dollars. The school is authorized by Grace College. Read more from the IBJ and Herald Times.
  8. TOP-RANKED SCHOOLS: Indianapolis is home to five of the state’s top ten high schools, based on a recent ranking from U.S. News & World Report. Read more from RTV6 and the Indy Star.