For over three decades, The Advancement Center for Washington Township Schools and North Central Alumni has existed to support the best possible education for our students. As one of the initial board members, Arthur Angotti, stated in our inaugural annual report, “The Foundation was formed on the premise that we can enhance public education’s future by privately funding programs and projects that might not qualify for school budgets.”
The Advancement Center continues to invest around $400,000 annually in this mission. But there are times when need and available resources allow for us to make what we believe will be truly transformative investments. It is with profound belief in the work Washington Township Schools are undertaking that our Board of Directors has allocated $82,965, to support the following programs:
Leading for Equity with Antiracist Work
Washington Township Schools is committed to culturally responsive teaching practices. However, the impacts of those methods are not as effective in the absence of antiracist work. District leadership believes Interrupting Racism for Children (IRFC) is the best way to support staff in the heavy lift they are taking to understand how biases and actions contribute to achievement disparities. While the long-term vision is to make this opportunity available to all staff, The Advancement Center is proud to allocate $35,000 for an initial phase of 140 teachers and administrators to attend the impactful two-day workshop.
“Participants leave the workshop with a greater sense of their own power and tools on how to interrupt the key elements designed to keep racism in place.” (IRFC)
The Center for Panther Pathways
In response to the 2017 Indiana General Assembly’s Graduation Pathway legislation, Washington Township Schools saw an opportunity to not just meet a new set of standards but exceed them in a more meaningful and impactful way. This allocation by the Advancement Center is an important part of the first-year funding needs to implement a gold standard program. Panther Pathways provides an expanded counseling approach that will allow MSDWT to better support a diverse student population in successfully navigating the complexities of life after high school graduation. Through new technology, staffing, and curriculum, Panther Pathways will foster educational opportunities and partnerships within the community to provide exposure and experiences at the appropriate times in a student’s educational path from 6th grade forward. The seven-year build of experiences will more equitably align resources for college and career journeys and continue MSDWT’s well established support of social, emotional and academic awareness, while increasing student growth in interpersonal skills and career knowledge.
Liftoff Learning Pod
In December, MSD Washington Township made The Advancement Center aware of 37 students who, due to child care and connectivity issues, were habitually unable to connect to live or recorded virtual instruction. Due to extenuating circumstances the traditionally deployed hotspot resources had not been effective and the District was passionate about finding a way to get these young students engaged. In response, the District was able to coordinate a specialized learning pod opportunity facilitated through AYS. Funds allocated by The Advancement Center have and will continue to provide the Liftoff program to these 37 students until schools reopen again on January 19th.
It is important to clarify that this $82,965 is beyond the already allocated funding we will provide to teachers and students this year. The Advancement Center firmly believes in the work Washington Township Schools is doing to provide immediate and long-term solutions associated with equity and access. This work has positive generational impacts and we see the importance, during this pivotal time, to invest. Thank you to our board and donors for thinking big and advancing the work.
This, however, is just the beginning. The Advancement Center funding is pivotal to give these programs their start, but more will be needed for continued growth. If these projects inspire you, please reach out to Emily Kaiser, Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn about supporting this work.