In a mid-term election with no big races, education could prove to be the most important issue to voters.
A few days ago, we told you education could be the biggest issue facing voters at the polls Tuesday in an otherwise lackluster mid-term. Today, we’ve gathered some evidence to prove that point.
Below is a sortable table of campaign donations to both state Senate and House candidates from education focused organizations: PACs, unions and individuals who are key stakeholders in Indiana education.
As you look through the tables, you’ll see there are significant donations from these organizations, and in the case of many candidates, education related donations funded most of the campaign.
There are two donors the fueled the most money into Republican and Democratic candidates: IPACE and HQE (how they’re represented in the table). Indiana Political Action Committee for Education, IPACE, is the political action committee affiliated with the Indiana State Teachers Association and are mostly funding Democratic candidates. On the other side, Hoosiers for Quality Education, a PAC affiliated with the Institute for Quality Education, is funding Republicans who advocate for school choice. Continue Reading →
Indiana's graduation rate has ticked up 10 points in the past five years.
UPDATED, 3:56 p.m. EST: More Indiana students are meeting the state’s exit requirements before graduating high school, according to data the Department of Education released Wednesday.
Though the state’s overall graduation rate was virtually unchanged between 2012 and 2013, the non-waiver graduation rate increased about a point — up to 81.7 percent from 80.5 percent.
(Click here to find your school’s 2013 graduation rate.)
“While the overall graduation rate is largely the same as it was in 2012, when you dig into the data it becomes clear that more of our students are graduating without a waiver and passing their end of course assessments,” says state superintendent Glenda Ritz. “This is a crucial step in ensuring that our students graduate from high school both college- and career-ready.” Continue Reading →
Indiana schools reported evaluating more than 55,000 teachers, counselors and administrators during the 2012-13 academic year, according to figures released Monday by the Department of Education. Of those licensed educators who were rated, more than 97 percent received the top two scores.
“This is not designed to compare one school corporation to another,” says Sen. Dennis Kruse, R-Auburn. “This is designed for a principal to do a vigorous evaluation of their teachers in their building.” Continue Reading →
A 'Holy Hall Monitor' near the front entrance of Our Lady of Hungary Catholic school in South Bend.
The majority of Indiana students using state-funded tuition vouchers are using them at private schools that received an A or a B in Indiana’s school ratings system for 2012-13.
But D or F rated private schools had, on average, twice as many voucher-recipient students as the A schools. And the private school with the most voucher students — Ambassador Christian Academy in Lake County — received an F from the state.
Private schools with A ratings enrolled an average of 57 voucher recipients. Private schools with D or F ratings enrolled more than 100 voucher recipients on average, according to a StateImpact analysis of the data. Continue Reading →
That’s more than two-thirds of all the charter schools and school districts in the state.
Gov. Mike Pence announced the recipients of the total of nearly $9.1 million in matching grants schools can now use to hire school resource officers, conduct “threat assessments” or purchase security equipment. State lawmakers created the grant program last session.
Superintendent Jon Willman, right, and members of the Hamilton Community School Board take questions about a proposed tax levy increase during a public meeting ahead of the November 2012 election. The referendum passed with 74 percent of the vote.
Less than a quarter of Indiana school corporations have pursued a referendum in the five years since the state legislature changed the way districts can levy taxes for construction and operating expenses.
Gov. Mitch Daniels talks to students at Our Lady of Hungary in South Bend last fall. The school benefited from a boost in enrollment last year from the state's voucher program.
The number of Indiana students participating in the state’s voucher program more than doubled in the program’s second year.
Some 9,324 students are attending private schools using state-funded vouchers this year. That’s up from 3,919 in 2011-12, making Indiana’s program the fastest growing in the country. Next year there’s no limit on the number of vouchers the state can award.
Forty-eight schools who didn’t participate in the program last year are now included on the list of institutions that accept vouchers, bringing the total to 289.
(You can find out how many students from your school corporation are participating in the voucher program after the jump.) Continue Reading →
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett chats with State Board of Education member Tony Walker before the panel's meeting Wednesday.
Scroll down to find what grade your school received — we included results for all traditional public, charter and private schools.
Fewer Indiana schools received the state’s highest performance rating this year compared to last year, according to letter grades Indiana Department of Education officials released Wednesday.
Forty percent of Indiana schools received an A, down from 47 percent in 2011. But one in five schools received B’s this year, up more than 10 percentage points from last year.
“This is a very positive day overall, very positive news,” Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett said during the State Board of Education meeting in Indianapolis Wednesday. Members of the executive panel approved the grades unanimously shortly thereafter.