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IPS Continues Rebuilding Stronger Tour with Visit to KIPP Indy

IPS Supt. Dr. Aleesia Johnson speaks to the audience about upgrades at KIPP Indy at Coleman.

Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) officials unveiled today how the district will invest $18.4 million into KIPP Indy, located in the Julian Coleman building, as part the Rebuilding Stronger Plan.

IPS Supt. Aleesia Johnson; William Murphy, the district’s chief operations officer; and Andy Seibert, executive director of KIPP Indy Public Schools, joined with business and city leaders and members of the media on a tour of the facility to learn about the upcoming changes. 

KIPP Indy serves about 1,100 students in grades K-8. Located in the Julian Coleman School 110 building, 1740 E. 30th St., KIPP Indy is a member of the IPS Innovation Network.

Johnson said the investment in KIPP Indy through Rebuilding Stronger is an example of how the district is working with its many educational partners throughout the city.

“Rebuilding Stronger is our commitment to ensure there are excellent choices open to every single one of our students, in every school, in every neighborhood,” Johnson said. “No matter the color of their skin, their zip code, their income level, or what language they speak at home, we want families not only to not have to worry about the school their children will attend, but to get excited about the numerous opportunities available at those schools. Rebuilding Stronger is the road map to build on and expand what works — while also tackling some of the biggest challenges we face. With this plan, we can deliver more great schools, more excellent offerings, and more equitable access.”

Siebert told the gathering that the modifications are examples of the stronger partnership between KIPP Indy and IPS.

Completion is scheduled for 2025. The school will continue operating while under renovations. In recent years, the school has enjoyed an improvement to its playground, restrooms and cafeteria/kitchen facilities.

During the tour of KIPP Indy, Murphy noted that the school will see a comprehensive set of upgrades to address building deficiencies, including the roof, windows, exterior doors, floors, ceilings, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, lighting, elevators and paved surfaces.

There also will be steps taken to increase security through card access and cameras.

Murphy said the district also will provide additional support with investments, including the school’s VoIP phone system and intercom system, via the 2018 referendum.

KIPP Indy is one of 20-plus schools scheduled to receive facility upgrades and renovations through the district’s 2023 Capital Referendum

A facilities study of IPS buildings indicates that more than 30 percent of its schools are rated in “poor” condition.

Johnson noted the 2023 Capital Referendum, which voters in the district will consider on May 2, will allow IPS to bring all its elementary and middle school buildings from “poor” to “good” status over the next eight years (“good” meaning they are only in need of routine maintenance).

The district’s 2023 Capital Referendum is a $410 million ask of residents living in the IPS boundary. For the median homeowner, that’s a $3 a month tax increase on their current property-tax bill.

The referendum is also on absentee and early voting ballots.