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December 2019 Board Highlights

The Indianapolis Public Schools Board of School Commissioners convened for its Board Review Session Tuesday, Dec. 17, and Board Action Session Thursday, Dec. 19. Topics included a report on Innovation Network School applicants, Innovation renewal agreements and a Student-Based Allocation (SBA) policy review.

What follows is a deeper look at some of those agenda items.

Innovation Network School Selection Update

Chief Portfolio Officer Jamie VanDeWalle provided an update on Innovation Network school applicants.

What Audiences Need to Know:

  • IPS has received 10 letters of interest from schools applying to join the district’s Innovation Network schools.
  • Four of those schools will make a presentation to the Board during the December Action Session.

Key Messages:

  • Allegiant Prep Academy is applying to restart an existing IPS school or be a charter partner in fall 2020 or fall 2021 serving Grades K-8.
    • Mission: Educates all students in Grades K–8 with rigorous academics, character development, and a commitment to community necessary for college success and a life of positive action.
    • Program highlights include:
      • Consistent leadership presence.
      • Weekly teacher professional development.
      • Cognitively guided math instruction.
  • Hope Academy is applying to be a charter partner in fall 2020 serving Grades 9-12.
    • Mission: Provides a safe, sober, restorative and challenging school experience for high school students recovering from alcoholism and/or drug addiction. Hope students make a commitment to personal recovery, have a desire to learn, want a high school diploma and are willing to be an active part of a school community of like-minded students and faculty.
    • Program highlights include:
      • Recovery supports, rather than a recovery center with educational supports.
      • A variety of recovery supports and recovery requirements.
      • A code of conduct and discipline procedures based on restorative principles.
  • Herron Preparatory Academy is part of Indianapolis Classical Schools and is applying to be a charter partner in fall 2020 serving Grades K-8.
    • Mission: A community of scholars that advances timeless ideas and content, builds a culture of respect and trust, and engages in an urban environment in order to prepare students to be world-class citizens.
    • Program highlights include:
      • Intentional diversity.
      • World languages.
      • A classical education.
  • Rooted School — Indianapolis is applying to be a charter partner in fall 2020 serving Grades 9-12.
    • Mission: Provide personal pathways to financial freedom by increasing students’ access to four-year colleges or universities and technical programs, and preparing them to compete in the city’s high-growth, high-wage industries.
    • Program highlights include:
      • Financial literacy.
      • Industry-recognized certifications and internships.
      • High-quality and culturally relevant curriculum.

For more information, click here: Boarddocs: Innovation Selection Update

Student-Based Allocation Model Update 

Chief Financial Officer Weston Young presented an update and changes on the IPS SBA policy for the 2020–2021 school year.

What Audiences Need to Know:

  • IPS calls weighted student funding models Student-Based Allocation. These models refer to the resources allocated for student needs.
    • The baseline formula describes the minimum resources required to operate a school.
    • The SBA formula calculation describes the resources required to support the needs of individual students.
    • All schools are funded at the SBA formula amount unless it is below the baseline, then they receive a supplement.
  • SBA empowers school leadership to be strategic with resources through equity, transparency and flexibility.
  • For the 2020–21 school year, the average baseline requirement to operate a school has risen due to salary increases and other formula adjustments that work to ensure student needs are met.

Key Messages:

SBA pool is projected to be higher,. Schools are projected to be at baseline. SBA reserves have been maintained at prior year to accommodate unexpected financial events.
  • The SBA reserves contain $2 million.
Need flexible SBA policy due to changes in portfolio of schools.

For more information, click here: Boarddocs: SBA Policy Update

Action: Approved 6-0

Innovation Network School Renewal and Agreement Recommendations

Chief Portfolio Officer Jamie VanDeWalle shared recommendations regarding Innovation Network school renewals and agreements.

What Audiences Need to Know:

  • When considering Innovation agreement renewals, IPS conducts a Renewal School Quality Review (RSQR) of each school while examining the following data points:
Examines Academics, finances, climate & culture and governance.

Key Messages:

Renewal Updates

  • Phalen Leadership Academy @ Francis Scott Key 103
  • The Innovation agreement started in the 2015–16 school year as an Innovation Restart.

Before the agreement:

  • The school had five consecutive F grades.
  • The school reported 119 fights in the 2014–15 school year.

Highlights since the agreement:

  • Enrollment is up 150 students.
  • IREAD-3 performance increased by more than 10 points.
  • There is a warm, calm school culture throughout the building.
  • The school received positive input from all stakeholder focus groups.
  • Governance health is strong.

ACTION: Approved 6-0

Proposed Agreement Amendments

  • Phalen Leadership Academy @ 103
Recoups additional resources and brings agreement inline with other innovation restart agreements.
  • Enlace Academy
Eliminate facilities payment. Institutes 25K fee. Brings agreement inline with other charter partners. Allows ips to recoup services.
  • Global Preparatory Academy @ Riverside 44 and Kindezi Academy @ Joyce Kilmer 69
Eliminates facilities payment in original agreement. Continues existing custodial team. Brings 2 agreements in line with other restart agreements.

For more information, click here: Boarddocs: Innovation Renewal Update

ACTION: Approved 6-0