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IPS board advances plan for struggling schools

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH)–A plan to revamp struggling public schools is one step closer to reality after a school board vote Thursday night.

The board voted to advance a plan to let outside two nonprofit organizations run IPS schools that consistently receive F grades.

The schools Riverside 44 and Joyce Kilmer 69 and the nonprofits are two education groups that say they can help the schools.

Thursday’s vote allows the school district and those organizations-Global Preparatory Academy and Kindezi Academy–to negotiate exactly how the plan will work.

The partnership would allow the nonprofits to use IPS resources, including food services, facilities and transportation. Under the plan, the schools would have to meet requirements set by IPS.

The nonprofits said current teachers can interview to stay at the schools, but they don’t have to keep the teachers.

That’s one reason Jay Dunn spoke out against the plan at the board meeting.

“I’m going to feel like we let the kids down. On top of that, I’m going to feel like we let the educators down that have taught in IPS for a long time.”

Charron Perry, on the other hand, spoke out in support of the plan. She said her 8-year-old son had five different first grade teachers at Joyce Kilmer because, one after another, they left the school.

“It’s been hard,” Perry said. “I was thinking, is this teacher staying or is this teachers leaving? Is this teacher permanent or what?”

Board members said the new plan could allow kids to have two teaches at once. Students would be able to stay at the same schools but they’d be learning under a new curriculum.

If the negotiations go smoothly, the transition could be complete by August.