Education, From The Capitol To The Classroom

When Students Miss The Test At Arlington High, The Bus Comes For Them

It’s early on Monday, Dec. 11 at Arlington High School and test coordinator Tina Ahlgren is trying to track down six missing students.

She and other staff have already spent the weekend calling phone numbers they’ve cobbled together to reach parents of these and other students who have yet to show up and take one of two standardized tests – the ISTEP 10 or end of course exam, known as the ECA.

“Right now I’m going through the kids that we’re most concerned about. These are the kids that haven’t made a single test,” Ahlgren says as she scrolls through a student database on her office computer. “They haven’t had any response from any parents and their attendance is bad enough that we’re very concerned about them.”

Indiana students need to pass one of those tests to earn a high school diploma. At Arlington, on the city’s Eastside, more than 200 students – including the entire junior class – have yet to pass both math and English portions of the test. Due to changes in state law, which test a student is required to take – ISTEP or ECA – depends on their graduation cohort.

At Arlington High School, on the Indianapolis’ east side, more than 200 students — including the entire junior class — have yet to pass a standardized test required to earn a high school diploma. The staff goes to extreme measures to make sure all kids take the test.

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Young Leaders Introduce ‘Inclusivity Pledge’

The goal of the pledge is to develop a more diverse and inclusive workforce. YLNI member Tim Spradling says the message is critical to attracting young talent.

“It makes a bold statement to a future of leaders living all over the United States that 50 of our largest employers have stepped forward and signed this pledge,” said Spradling.

“They said, ‘This is how we do business here. We want you here.’”

Fort Wayne City Council voted 7-2 to sign a non-binding resolution called the Fort Wayne Commitment and Inclusivity Pledge, presented by Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana. “We believe diversity of thought, background, experience and people drive innovation. We promote an environment that is welcoming and conducive to the success of all,” the pledge states.

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Lawmakers Prepare for Changes on Graduation Paths, Diplomas

Rep. Bob Behning (R-Indianapolis) has been chair of the House Education Committee since 2011. (Photo courtesy of the Indiana General Assembly)

Rep. Bob Behning (R-Indianapolis) has been chair of the House Education Committee since 2011. (Photo courtesy of the Indiana General Assembly)

Changes to Indiana’s education system in 2018 will largely focus on increasing students’ work skills, but one key lawmaker says there’s more to discuss around high school graduation.

A change in federal law means Indiana’s diploma system needs attention, and House Education Committee Chair Bob Behning says he envisions something a little less complicated.

“Our goal would be probably to have a single diploma as opposed to having four different diploma types,” he says.

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Youth Workers Train To Help Children Of Incarcerated Parents

The training session in Martinsville hosted by the Indiana Youth Institute and led by Volunteers of America’s Greta Compton. The talk provided insight into the growing problem of mass incarceration and family health.

Compton says youth providers on the frontlines can help shape the conversation.

Article origination IPBS-RJC A small group of youth workers in the state had the opportunity to learn more about how to help these children whose emotional and mental wellbeing is often impacted. One in 10 Indiana children have a parent who is incarcerated. That’s one of the highest rates in the nation.

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Northwest Allen County Schools Prepare For Enrollment Increases

This year Huntertown Elementary School reached capacity and is currently using two portable classrooms. Cedar Canyon, Eel River and Oak View Elementary Schools are at enrollment capacity.

At the last public hearing, the board of school trustees unanimously voted to move forward with the decision to build the elementary school.

Superintendent Chris Himsel said a recent demographics study showed the district’s enrollment numbers will continue to grow.

Northwest Allen County Schools are experiencing a growth in student enrollment. As a result, the board of school trustees took preliminary measures to build a new elementary school to accommodate students. The last time the district built an elementary school was in 2009. Since then, the school district has gained almost 500 elementary students.

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Community Youth Orchestra Keeps Strings Instruments Alive Locally

The Youth Symphony Orchestras of East Central Indiana gives students in Muncie, and across the state, the opportunity to learn strings instruments at different levels.

“We want to educate and inspire children of all ages, elementary through high school to learn about music and to love music,” executive director Tiffany Arnold says

The orchestra provides classes for students at three different levels: Prelude for beginners, Intermezzo for intermediates and Youth Symphony for advanced students. Any student between the ages of 5 and 18 can join any of the three levels, based on his/her skill level.

For students who play instruments, marching band and jazz band are popular offerings at high schools around the country. But school orchestras are fewer in number. That’s where locally organized groups, like the Youth Symphony Orchestras of East Central Indiana, come in. As part of a Ball State U

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Report: Hoosiers Could Pay More For Childcare Than College



Hoosiers could pay more for childcare than they would for their kid’s college tuition. That’s from a new report put together by a national child care policy nonprofit.

ChildCare Aware reports the average Hoosier family spends nearly a third of its income on child care costs. And for a single parent, a licensed child care program can eat up over half of their income. Early Learning Indiana’s Emily Rouge says comparing the cost to college tuition highlights the huge financial impact on families.

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Fate of Elkhart Crossing Guards Still Unknown

The kerfuffle over who should pay for crossing guards is not new to Elkhart. Most people say it’s a often a disagreement between schools and city officials but usually settled quickly.

The city of Elkhart traditionally pays crossing guards for their service, but since last summer have said the city can no longer afford the expense and Indiana code doesn’t require them to budget for crossing guards.

As students leave for holiday break, the fate of Elkhart crossing guards is still unknown. The city of Elkhart cut funding for school crossing guards when they adopted their new budget in October. The cost to fund crossing guards for a year is about $222,000.

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IPFW Faculty Member Creates Autism Support Group

John Sheehan leads the group. He’s an accommodation specialist in the Services for Students with Disabilities department. He says there are a lot of services through high school but then that drastically stops.

“Once they hit graduation all of that goes away, once they graduate from high school. There is nothing really available for them in terms of services,” said Sheehan.

Sheehan says it is taxing to consistently remind yourself to do normal things like make eye contact.

Like many college campuses around the country IPFW has seen a rise in the number of students with autism. On top of transitioning to a more independent lifestyle, students with autism may find it difficult to confront new social interactions. That’s why IPFW started an autism support group.

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¿QPM? 5: Undocumented sin saber. Finding DACA.

¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? is a bilingual podcast from WNIN in Evansville. Their newest episode is on a student who didn’t find out she was undocumented until she was 15, looking for colleges.

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Imagine establishing a life in a foreign country that then becomes home – mi casa- even more than where you come from. That’s how twenty one year old Laura Ayala feels. See, Laura can navigate the city of Cincinnati easier than she can travel through the roads of Bogota, Colombia because she moved from Colombia when she was just four.

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