Indianapolis-based Hope Academy, the state’s only recovery high school, is teaming up with Simon Youth Foundation to become the newest Indianapolis Simon Youth Academy. Through the partnership, the nonprofits say they will collaborate to provide area teens with the tools and resources to graduate and prepare for a post-graduation career path.
In addition, SYF is planning to provide professional development opportunities to Hope Academy teachers and scholarship opportunities to its students.
“The mission alignment between Simon Youth Foundation and Hope Academy is perfectly in sync,” said Hope Academy Executive Director Rachelle Gardner. “Teens who struggle with substance use disorders are at a much higher risk of dropping out of high school and have different educational needs than students who aren’t impacted by substance abuse and addiction. Partnering with SYF will allow us to bring more innovation and resources to the classroom and address the unique challenges of our students.”
Last month, the Indiana Department of Education awarded SYF a nearly $360,000 student recovery grant to support ten Simon Youth Academies, one of which is Hope Academy. The nonprofit says the grant will support post-secondary scholarships, teacher professional development, workforce development collaborations, student college visits and civic learning trips and student resources and technology.
“SYF’s mission is to meet students where they are and help them reach graduation day, much as Hope Academy has met students where they are in their addiction recovery,” said SYF Director of Programs Jon Shapiro. “We are excited to provide additional support and resources to the students and faculty of Hope Academy, thereby helping more students achieve their goals through education.”
Simon Youth Academies are non-traditional high schools that give students at risk of dropping out an education and flexible environment.