Dr. Ferebee shares a page of notes from his most recent school
visits.

 

In my
time spent in our schools, I am constantly amazed by what our students are
learning and how well they apply themselves. I am equally impressed with the
efforts of our talented educators who give their time and expertise daily with
a genuine commitment to helping young people succeed. IPS has some of the most
enriching, engaging and innovative choice offerings in the state. I recently
visited Simon Youth Academy at Circle Centre Mall and Broad Ripple School for
the Arts and Humanities. With an emphasis on observing the leadership of
first-year principals; I was quite pleased with what I experienced at these
secondary schools.

 

Simon
Youth Academy at Circle Centre Mall:

  • Small learning
    environment focused on college and career development 
    • Bright, attractive and
      modern learning environment
    • Commercial photography
      studio has expanded student creativity and innovation 
  • Instruction is
    Individualized and personal 
  • Teachers have embraced their mentor and coaching
    roles
    • Mr. Cinninger
      (Social Studies) was actually teaching math, preparing a student for an
      upcoming geometry test
    • Appreciated that he said, “we do whatever
      it takes…” 
  • Blending learning environment is
    providing students with opportunities for remedial and advanced studies
  • Students are able to move at their own pace with
    tools such as Google Classroom and Edgenuity
  • Amazing student photos
    drape each iMac in the lab
  • Impressed with the
    strong, genuine
    relationships developed with students 
  • Pleased with how
    students have maintained their pristine new high-tech
    learning space
  • Extraordinary
    partnership with Simon Malls

 

Broad Ripple:

 

  • Clear school-wide focus on character and
    leadership development
  • Staff ownership of instructional program and
    student outcomes is impressive
  • Humanities program
    implemented with fidelity; hybrid History and English co-teaching model
    • Ms. Huckleberry (English) and Mr. Broadstreet (History) were
      collaborating well
    • Students were
      discussing a mock lawsuit against them regarding their 3D print organs for people who need organ
      transplants
  • Evidence of strong
    instructional planning to incorporate relevant, real-world examples
  • Mr. Grimes’ (AP Psychology) class was brimming
    with student engagement and excitement
  • Established honors
    convocation to celebrate academic excellence based on school’s new mantra,
    The Five
    Wells
    • The Five Wells is evidence of PBIS school-wide
      traits (The Five Wells): be Well Dressed, Engaged, Balanced, Read and Spoken.
  • Hallways reflect
    instructional program featuring student-made prints 
  • Very grateful to have
    piano recently donated by McDonalds, our
    partners across the street from the school
  • Teachers leveraging
    cooperative learning to advance student mastery and social skills