US Department of Education /

It’s been one year since legislators created a new school funding formula.

The formula gives equal funding to all schools, but critics say that’s unfair because schools with a lot of low incomes kids or students learning English need more money.

StateImpact Indiana’s Claire McInerny visited Goshen, Indiana, and found the district is scrambling to save its English Learning program in light of the funding cuts.

Jessica Spengler /

Since the 1970s, Vincennes University has offered a one of kind degree program - a certificate in bowling management.

Dwindling enrollment forced the school to cut the program this fall, but alumni and faculty are fighting to make sure students who are still interested in studying bowling can. And they say that's critical to keeping the industry alive.

Read the whole story at StateImpact Indiana's website.

Lt. Governor Ellspermann Eyes Top Ivy Tech Job

Dec 22, 2015
Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Ivy Tech Community College president Thomas Snyder is set to retire next year. Now, the college board of trustees is moving forward with their search to find a successor.

On Monday, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann said she’s eyeing the job. Today she released a statement saying she’s informed Governor Mike Pence of the possibility, but the decision is ultimately up to the school’s Board of Trustees.

If Ellspermann would take the job, it would leave Pence without a running mate during a re-election bid.

Two National Reports Laud Indiana Charter Schools

Dec 11, 2015
Rachel Morello / StateImpact Indiana

Two national reports out this week give high praise to Indiana and Indianapolis for its policies governing charter schools.

Indiana ranks as one of the two best states out of 43 for policies on creating and policing charter schools by the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, or NAC-SA.

The Chicago-based group promotes eight guidelines, including closing failing charters and public reporting.

Rachel Morello / StateImpact Indiana

In considering solutions for recruiting new teachers and retaining existing personnel to combat Indiana's teacher shortage, state education leaders know they need more English Language Learning instructors.

ELL teachers are hard to come by in Indiana, as well as in other states – and, as StateImpact Indiana's Rachel Morello reports, the problem is two-fold:

Not only is there a limited number of qualified ELL instructors, but the state expects them to be able to speak and relate to students from all cultures represented in their student population.

Giant Purdue Pencil Still At Large

Nov 18, 2015
Purdue Arboretum /

In a crime that’s one part Maltese Falcon and one part School House Rock, Purdue University authorities are looking for a 12-foot pencil reported missing earlier this week.

The sculpture had only been at its new home in Purdue’s Pickett Park for a few months before it was pencil-napped by vandals. Purdue Police say since the pencil was in a somewhat secluded area, there isn’t any video evidence of the heist.

Judy Baxter /

As Indiana policymakers prepare for the 2016 legislative session, they are defining the issues they plan to address – and, like last year, education falls near the top of the list. Measures to address Indiana's teacher shortage will take precedence this session; lawmakers’ agenda mirrors that of many education leaders in the state: teacher recruitment and retention.

When you’re new to something, it takes a lot of trial and error to figure out a rhythm.

For first-time teachers, this process happens with dozens of students acting as their guinea pigs.

StateImpact Indiana’s Claire McInerny continues her series following three first year teachers to find out, now that they’re a couple months into school, what’s working in their classrooms -- and what’s not.

Daniel Hickey

A transcript is one of a student’s most valuable assets, whether they’re high school seniors trying to get into college or university students looking for their first job.

The classes listed on that piece of paper tell admissions counselors and potential employers where knowledge lies.

But what if they could actually see what's been learned? That’s where digital badges come in.

Claire McInerny / StateImpact Indiana

In some ways educating a child is like working on a puzzle – and it’s up to policymakers at the federal and state level, along with principals, teachers and parents, to piece it all together.

This month, two of those stakeholders have been talking strategy during parent teacher conferences.

StateImpact Indiana’s Claire McInerny reports on how parents can get the most out of their time meeting with teachers.