While debates around public education remain heated, I am reminded of a sign that a colleague once shared with me- The Death of Public Education…“because we have always done it this way.” The sign implies how difficult change is and how sustainable transformation takes time. Bumps and bruises always come. This notion of growing pains is relevant to the transformation that is happening now in IPS. Change isn’t pretty – even when it’s well-calculated – but we are progressing to a culture of exceptional service and excellent student outcomes. In a challenging year of new state standards and assessments, I still see many bright spots to build upon. Instruction, assessments and service delivery are all in process improvement and will be even more productive next school year. This year we streamlined the enrollment and magnet application processes to improve user-friendliness, yet we must still provide much better service to our families.  I remind others and myself that all this doesn’t happen overnight.

What’s exciting is we are continuing to assemble the right team and harvest the best talent to move forward at a faster pace. Student achievement is climbing upward and staff is recommitting to “5-star” service.  What’s even more exciting is we have a diverse group of stakeholders developing our strategic plan – a roadmap that will drive the change process from every angle of our organization. Our Board of School Commissioners will continue to help ignite the fire of transformation in IPS. The fire is blazing and the needle is moving, but we can’t lose sight that it hasn’t been easy to improve to where we are now…and we won’t easily reach where we strive to be.