INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Public School is preparing for up to 200 Afghan children to come into the school’s district between now and spring, the school district announced Tuesday.
Currently, six to eight Afghan families are already enrolled within the IPS district but a resettlement agency working with the school district projected upwards of 200 more settling in the district by spring.
IPS stated ideally the plan would be to cluster those students and families in order to give them easier access to support and resources within the district.
IPS is also planning to expand its bilingual staff, specifically in languages such as Haitian and Pashto. IPS stated they’ve seen a 20 percent increase in graduation rates for English language learners over the last four years.
The school district has also added an English as a New Language liaison, district translators, more than 50 bilingual assistants and more than 90 new English as a New Language teachers across the district.
In unrelated news, IPS announced it does not intend to renew its innovation partnership with Ignite Achievement Academy.
Ignite Academy is approaching its five-year renewal lease, IPS said.
IPS stated data collected in their review reveals the school had below IPS average performances, declining enrollment, suspension rates among the top 10 in the district and staff retention below the district average. These factors, along with concerns from stakeholders, led to the decision to not recommend a renewal.
IPS said the Ignite school building will still be open and that kids who attend and live in the district will have a place to go, but the question remains of who will lead the school. Conversations will continue about the school’s fate including what will happen with the teachers currently working within the school.
IPS said possibilities include Ignite Academy being run by the district or another charter partner, but the outcome is still to be determined. This will be the second time IPS has chosen not to renew a similar partnership.