Executive Director Update: District Visits, Indiana Career Collaborative, & Federal Safety Grant

Executive Director Updates

It’s Fall Break time for many schools. We hope all Indiana educators have time to regenerate and spend time with family and friends.

District Visits

A significant aspect of CIESC’s focus on supporting and serving Indiana educators and students is to conduct district visits with member superintendents and/or their leadership teams. As Executive Director, I make it a point to visit our district members at least once every two years to discuss the district’s use of CIESC programs and services, the district’s return on investment, and determine what more our service center can be doing to support them. These district visits have been a driving force in improving how we serve our member districts. A series of visits for 2023-2024 will take place over the coming months.

Indiana Career Collaborative

CIESC continues to not only deliver high-quality programs and services to its members, but we are also highly engaged in several state and federal grants. One of our services that was created when we received an IDOE 3E grant is called the Indiana Career Collaborative. It currently supports the transformational implementation of a comprehensive college and career system in seven school districts: Fort Wayne, Whitley County, Batesville, MSD Warren Township, Mill Creek, Hamilton Heights, and Hamilton Southeastern. CIESC partners with Ford Next Generation Learning (Ford NGL), which is part of the Ford Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company. All seven districts engage in a five-phase roadmap that utilizes a community-connected approach to develop a Portrait of a Learner (Graduate) and a master plan that will identify career pathways that make learning more relevant for students and include high-quality work-based learning experiences and credentials of value.  

Both Fort Wayne and Whitley County have completed the first three phases of the Ford NGL process and have been designated official Ford NGL communities. This is a tremendous accomplishment because of the commitment of all district stakeholders to this transformational process. All five other districts are working diligently through the Ford NGL process with the goal of also becoming designated Ford NGL communities by the start of next school year.  

The Indiana Career Collaborative, in partnership with Ford NGL, provides a systematic approach for all Indiana school districts that will not only satisfy all state-level college and career expectations, but, more importantly, transform K-12 education to make learning more relevant to students by providing students with the career exploration, engagement, and experiences needed to find their “best fit” post-secondary option:  enrollment, enlistment, and/or employment.   

Please let us know if you would like to learn more about the Indiana Career Collaborative. Reach out to Dr. Kimberly Fifer, our Director of Educational Innovation, at kfifer@ciesc.org or at 317.497.5114.

STOP School Violence Grant

CIESC was also recently notified that it was awarded nearly a $1 million 2023 STOP School Violence federal grant from the Department of Justice. 

This grant is an effort to provide a safety and wellness continuum of care to the following six CIESC members:

  • Beech Grove
  • Franklin Township
  • MSD of Lawrence Township
  • MSD of Pike Township
  • MSD of Warren Township
  • MSD of Washington Township 

The specific supports to be provided include:

  • STOPit Solutions – Technology-Based Mental Health Support Anonymous Reporting (TBMH) and After-Hours Emergency Crisis Support
  • Rachel’s Challenge School Violence Prevention Program
  • Terrace Metrics Behavioral Health and Wellness System
  • PREPaRE Crisis Training Curriculum
  • Starling Minds Social, Emotional, and Wellbeing Support for Educators

The goal is to enhance each district’s ability to proactively support students and educators well-being and, therefore, make schools an even safer place for educators to teach and students to learn.   

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