Four New Charter Schools Are Coming to Indianapolis Next Year


The floodgates are still open here in Indianapolis and the schools keep coming. The already large portfolio of charter schools in Indianapolis is going to grow more beginning next school year. This blog is not about the opinion of those schools scheduled to open. This blog is not about whether or not we need any more schools opening. This blog is informative and will highlight the schools that will open here in Indianapolis for the 2017-2018 school year. Of the four schools opening, only one is led by someone with ties and roots here to Indianapolis.

The Four schools opening next school year are: PilotED, Matchbook Learning, Urban Act, and Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis.

PilotED Schools: PilotED will be a K-8 school that aims to empower the way in which students see themselves and the world around them through the use of a school model that embodies social-emotional identity development, a robust civic engagement system, and a rigorous culturally relevant academic curriculum. Through this model, PilotED strives to interrupt generational cycles of poverty. The PilotED’s academic and school culture programs are built on three core values: social identity, academic excellence, and civic engagement. These three values lead all recruitment, development, and instruction of students and staff to ensure a strong culture. They are looking to be located in the Devington area on the east side of Indianapolis. The school is being open by two Mind Trust Fellows Jacob Allen and Maria Dandie.

Matchbook Learning Indianapolis: The mission of the Matchbook Learning Indianapolis School is the following: Develop a learning community in which we continually improve student academic outcomes through personalization to meet our individual students’ academic needs. In addition to continued growth in academic outcomes, Matchbook Learning Indianapolis will develop global citizens by providing all students with real world experiences that help them understand other perspectives, the world around them, and the world beyond them. Matchbook Learning’s mission helps students map out their individual pathways to reach their goals for whom and what they want to become when they grow up. The school plans to be located north of downtown in the Butler-Tarkington or Rocky Ripple area. The school is being opened by the CEO of Matchbook Learning Sajan George.

Urban Act Academy: URBAN ACT stands for “Us reaching, benefiting, aiding and nurturing a community together”. URBAN ACT Academy aims to work with and within our community to disrupt the cycle of poverty that primarily impacts low-income and minority students. The school is designed and centered around the African proverb, “It takes a whole village to raise child.” Urban Act Academy would like to instill in students that once the community has worked together to support their growth and achievement, they now have a responsibility to give back to the community that invested in them. URBAN ACT Academy’s mission is to empower students as leaders to develop globally competitive scholars and informed citizens. URBAN ACT Academy envisions a stronger community shaped by the critical thinking, problem solving and caring leadership of our future scholars using their knowledge, voice and talents to make positive contributions. The school is looking to be located on the northwest side of Indianapolis and will be opened by Mind Trust fellow Nigena Livingston.

Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis: My fellow blogger Shawnta Barnes wrote an excellent piece on Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis. Read more about the new W\west side charter school here.

All information regarding the schools: PilotED, Matchbook, and Urban Act were pulled from the school's application submitted to the Mayor’s Office. To read their entire proposals click here.



David McGuire

Mr. McGuire is a middle school teacher in Indianapolis, Teach Plus Policy Fellow, and currently enrolled in a doctoral program at Indiana State University for Educational Leadership. Driven by the lack of having an African American male teacher in his classrooms growing up, David helped launched the Educate ME Foundation, which is geared towards increasing the number of African American male teachers in the classroom. A born and raised Hoosier, he is dedicated to improving educational outcomes for all students in Indianapolis. He describes his educational beliefs as a reformer grounded in the best practices of traditional public schools, where he was mentored by strong leaders. David graduated from Central State University with a degree in English and also holds an MBA from Indiana Wesleyan University.