Tuesday, September 27, 2016
Samantha Hart
Press Secretary
(317) 232-0550

193 schools have exited Focus and Priority status since the creation of the Outreach Division in 2013

INDIANAPOLIS – Glenda Ritz, Indiana’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, released updated data from the Indiana Department of Education’s Outreach Division of School Improvement today. The data show that since the creation of the Outreach Division, 193 schools have exited focus or priority status, resulting in improving schools for more than 108,000 Hoosier students.

“When I took office, one of my top priorities was to make sure the Department of Education delivered high-quality direct service to public schools,” said Ritz. “I created our Outreach Division to do this work and to provide support and resources to all schools so that every student has access to a high-quality education. I am incredibly proud of its work and the work of dedicated school leaders and educators across the state.”

The Outreach Division focuses on helping lower performing schools exit state intervention, as well as preventing others from needing state intervention. In the first year of the program, 159 schools met the rigorous criteria to exit state intervention status. In the second year, while transitioning to more rigorous standards and assessments, an additional 34 schools exited this status.

To date, the work of Outreach, in partnership with educators across the state, resulted in more than 108,000 students attending schools that are no longer rated D or F by Indiana’s school accountability system. An additional 76,000 students now attend schools that have demonstrated significant improvement and increased at least one designation within the school accountability system.

The Department has sixteen Outreach Coordinators that live throughout the state and work with all local schools to provide support and professional development focused on school improvement. An informal survey by the Department of focus and priority school principals showed that 98% of Outreach Coordinators met or exceeded expectations in supporting the school’s improvement efforts. Additionally, schools reported a 95% overall satisfaction rate of satisfied or very satisfied with the support provided by the Department.

More information on Outreach can be found on the Department’s website.