Purdue Polytechnic High Schools is planning to expand its model and STEM-focused education curriculum to a third Indianapolis location. The charter school’s new site, which will be located in Pike Township on Indianapolis’ northwest side, is expected to open for the 2023-24 academic year.
The new location will be the fourth site for PPHS in Indiana, joining the Schweitzer Center at Englewood on the east side of Indianapolis, the North campus in Broad Ripple, and PPHS South Bend. PPHS offers STEM-based curriculum, intended to provide core academic principles and skills.
“Purdue is committed to increasing the pipeline and opportunities for underrepresented students who have the skills to take their education to the next level,” Purdue President Mitch Daniels said. “Waiting on Indiana’s existing public school systems was not getting the job done, so we opted for the direct action of starting our own school, and they’re making a significant difference —not enough, but a big improvement.”
The public high school was founded by Purdue in 2016. Purdue says the network has since grown to serve more than 1,000 students in the three locations during the 2022-23 school year.
“We know that even though the college-going rate in Indiana has declined since the start of the pandemic, our schools have successfully been sending students to college, beating the state average by double-digit percentage points,” said Scott Bess, PPHS executive director. “When looking at the outcomes for Black, Hispanic and low-income students, our numbers are even better. We have decades of data showing us that the traditional way of teaching students just isn’t cutting it. Purdue and our board have been very supportive of opening new schools to expand our impact, and we have a real sense of urgency to do just that.”
Purdue says this will be the first time a charter high school has set out to open a school in Marion County outside of the Indianapolis Public Schools district. PPHS is working with a broker and community partners to identify a location for the new school in Pike Township.