Indiana News

Indiana recommends nearly $134M in student testing contracts

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Indiana schools Superintendent Glenda Ritz is blasting a state recommendation to award nearly $134 million to six vendors to develop and administer tests for state’s students.

The Indiana Department of Administration posted award letters Wednesday after a bid process to administer Indiana’s student assessments through the spring of 2017.

Ritz called the costs “astronomical” in a statement and called for streamlining the tests given to thousands of students.

The contracts include $38 million to vendor Pearson for the ISTEP+ exam that is taken by about 450,000 students in grades 3 through 8. The test has been administered by CTB/McGraw-Hill and has been marred by testing interruptions in recent years.

A bill moving through the Legislature calls for switching from the ISTEP+ exam to a national test.


Shoe art by Kokomo native stolen from northern Indiana museum

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WISH) — A shoe by an Indiana native was stolen Saturday from a northern Indiana art museum.

South Bend Museum of Art is seeking help to find the thief of a shoe from the piece titled “Welcome Knives,” part of an exhibit by Kokomo native Chris Francis that’s traveled to other U.S. museums. His work has been described as wearable architecture.

The shoe disappeared between 2 and 5 p.m. Saturday while the museum was open. The museum staff and city police are reviewing surveillance video from the Century Center to gain a lead. South Bend’s show called “Chris Francis: Modern Bespoke 21st Century Shoe Art” is in the downtown Century Center through April 5.

Francis, who grew up in Kokomo and now lives in Los Angeles, said in a statement that he was “saddened to be informed that someone has chosen to steal the piece ‘Welcome Knives’ from the exhibition. The shoes exhibited are all documented and catalogued works of art that have shown in many museums. Every shoe in the exhibition is one of a kind, with no others in existence making them very different than shoes we find in stores.”

Francis has created shoes for runway shows and for celebrities, including Lady Gaga and the members of Kiss and The Sex Pistols.

His work was displayed late last year on the Purdue University campus.

Anyone with information was asked to call the South Bend Police Department at (574) 235.9201 or contact the South Bend Museum of Art via email at, or through the museum’s social media accounts: Facebook, @SouthBendMuseumofArt; Twitter, @southbendart; Instagram, @southbendart.