INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — School is back in session, meaning it’s the perfect time for parents and students to learn more about the leaders of local school districts and their plans for the academic year.
Dr. Scott Wyndham is the superintendent of the Avon Community School Corporation. He became the district’s superintendent in fall 2020, taking over for Dr. Maggie Hoernemann upon her retirement.
Wyndham stopped by Daybreak on Wednesday to talk about the new school year, the continued growth of Avon Schools, and how the district is navigating the statewide teacher shortage.
Avon students returned to the classroom on July 28, a bit earlier than some of the other school districts in the area.
“We’re starting week three of a new school year. It’s been great, a really positive start to the school year and we’re excited to be back in school,” Wyndham said.
Avon Schools has more than 10,500 students, making it one of the fastest-growing school districts in the state.
“Over the last couple of years, we’ve had the third-highest enrollment growth of any school district in the state of Indiana,” Wyndham said. “We’re constantly looking at, ‘How do we continue to serve more kids and more families that want to be a part of our great community?’”
The surge in enrollment is leading to big changes at Avon High School.
“We are getting ready to start a pretty significant expansion at Avon High School to add classrooms to that school. But, also, the core parts of that building are almost 25 years old and they weren’t designed for the number of students that are projected to come in our doors,” Wyndham said “We’re also looking at projects to expand one of our elementary schools that we haven’t touched yet.”
Even as enrollment grows, the district is not immune to the effects of the statewide teacher shortage, Wyndham says.
“This is the toughest environment we’ve ever faced and we’re fortunate to be a suburb of Indianapolis and a growing community that people are coming to, but it’s still hard, even for us. So we worked really hard to, number one, retain the great teachers and staff that we have, but then also make sure that we’re starting early to recruit new teachers.”
Despite the teacher shortage, the district’s educators are dedicated to making sure students succeed, according to Wyndham.
“We’ve seen, especially coming out of a challenging couple of years with COVID-19, we’ve seen our teachers just really go above and beyond to help kids and fill in gaps that maybe kids developed that weren’t there a couple of years ago. We have built in time every week for our teachers to collaborate with one another and help one another in supporting the needs of their students, and we’re seeing that that’s really paying off in student learning.”
Visit the Avon Community School Corporation website to learn more.