What Indianapolis Parents Need To Know About The Major Changes Coming To Public Schools

Indianapolis Public Schools unveiled its Rebuild Stronger plan to restructure district schools, bolster academics, and offer parents more school choice.

By Jessica Marie Baumgartner | Published

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Indianapolis Public Schools have released the details to their “Rebuilt Stronger” plan. This has taken months to draft and will highly impact families within the area. Strategic goals have been laid out to make the education system more, along with steps to update campuses to meet the changing needs of modern students

The new Indianapolis Public School plan involves improving graduation rate and encouraging higher enrollment rates. This will be tackled by properly addressing school inconsistencies. While some schools are overcrowded, some are nearly empty and so redistricting to allow changes in student placement has been suggested. 

Indianapolis Public Schools are to be reorganized, upgraded, and consolidated. Seven locations have been placed on the chopping block, while 14 are expected to receive renovations to prepare for more students if the plan is approved. Another two elementary schools are suggested to be built by the summer of 2026.   

Educational subjects and program expansions are included to provide enriching academic experiences and opportunities. Currently, elementary schools offer some art classes, but moving forward this proposal wishes to ensure that art, music, physical education, technology, reading and library access is available to all young children as well as college readiness and high school preparation. Indianapolis Public Schools will also be required to offer every middle school student the opportunity to play an instrument, join choir, or study visual arts, as well as, join a sports team and/or engage in advanced core class studies.   

In addition, “free” taxpayer-funded socialized preschool access will be expanded to more families. The new Indianapolis Public Schools plan details closing the district’s only preschool facility. In return, five school locations will add preschool options to their location. 

Most importantly the district is hoping to offer more school choice. Instead of hosting strict location requirements based on proximity, this proposal newly separates the schools across four wide-spanning areas. Parents will be offered the ability to choose any school in their quarter-portioned zone and will be provided free transportation at no cost. 

While Indianapolis Public School officials hope to encourage student achievement, especially for black and hispanic children, this plan does lend a significant focus on making education more “equitable.” Just how this will be gained is not certain, so whether or not race-based admissions, grading, disciplinary actions, and hiring practices will be implemented — as it already has in schools across the nation — is uncertain. The cost analysis of these major changes have also yet to be fully released. 

This is of major concern to taxpayers being that education system changes of this caliper often come with a high price tag that is not always easy to sustain. In addition, 40% of Indiana state’s education budget is spent covering the costs of teacher pensions alone under the current structure. As claims that schools are grossly underfunded continue to circulate, budgeting for the Indianapolis Public Schools’ “Rebuild Stronger” plan is likely to prove difficult and come under fire from critics of similar initiatives like Biden’s “Build Back Better” plan — which has yet to relieve American families of economic hardship brought on by increasing inflation rates

Indianapolis public schools

Parents of Indianapolis Public School students may be experiencing swift changes in the near future. That all depends on whether or not this new plan is approved. If it does go through, the area will see an expansion of potentially enriching programs and school choice abilities but families may also bear the burden of the costs associated with them.