REINVENTING HIGH SCHOOL
We are reinventing high school with the launch of our flagship Purdue Polytechnic High School in August 2017. Our mission is to create an environment of academic excellence characterized by industry-focused experiential learning; mentors who nurture, guide and trust; and students who develop a natural thirst to learn in preparation for their lifelong journeys. Our vision is to develop a new generation of skilled talent by seamlessly transitioning graduates from high school to college to high-tech, high-wage jobs. Our core principles will guide all design and operating decisions. These principles will stay constant as our network of schools grows from one to many. While new locations may bring unique student populations or challenges, our core principles will ensure fidelity to the Purdue Polytechnic High School mission and vision.
Our forward-thinking curriculum is academically rigorous yet flexible enough to adapt to each student’s personal interests. All students experience academic and social supports tailored specifically to their needs. Students learn to be responsible for recognizing their own gaps in academic knowledge and receive high-quality instructional supports when they need it. There are no pre-defined schedules where students move from class to class in large groups. Teachers and students work together to schedule time for instruction, which can occur individually, in small groups, or in larger groups, and can be delivered in a variety of formats depending on the learning style of the student. By graduation, Purdue Polytechnic High School students must demonstrate high levels of social responsibility, personal accountability and independent thinking.
PROJECT BASED LEARNING
Design-based learning is the backbone of Purdue Polytechnic High School’s redesigned and re-imagined educational model. Student work is focused on solving problems through design challenges and projects. These problems are presented in the context of real-world issues that come from the cities and neighborhoods our students live in, as well as from business and industry partners. Students work with others to develop solutions to complex issues, navigate barriers and arrive at a successful outcome.
All of our students will have the academic preparation necessary to demonstrate mastery of state standards and pass state mandated high school graduation exams. We expect Purdue Polytechnic High School students to earn high scores on college entrance exams to qualify for admission to Purdue and other four-year universities. Some Purdue Polytechnic High School students may choose to directly enter the workforce after graduation. Whichever route graduates take, we strongly believe all students should be academically prepared to maximize their learning and earning potential.
Most of our students entering ninth grade will have very limited exposure to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) career opportunities. All students will learn about major career pathways that offer strong employability options and interact with business professionals through mentor relationships. Students will take part in internships and earn industry-recognized certifications. Purdue Polytechnic High School curriculum will have a heavy emphasis on 21st century skills and the importance of academic excellence, professionalism and collaboration. Purdue Polytechnic High School graduates will be academically prepared to pass high school graduation exams, persist and succeed in post-secondary education, and/or obtain employment in a high-tech, high-wage job.
Staff will practice Purdue Polytechnic High School core principles by promoting a positive and nurturing school culture and serve as role models for students and each other. It is our expectation that every student has a strong relationship with at least one staff member and every staff member has a strong relationship with at least one student. Staff will understand a student’s personal circumstances and the opportunities or barriers they present; they will take those circumstances into account in every decision related to that student.