New STEM charter school with Purdue Univ. ties could be in Evansville’s future

New STEM charter school with Purdue Univ. ties could be in Evansville’s future

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - There’s a push for a new STEM focused charter school in Evansville.

It’s called Purdue Polytechnic High School, which partners with Purdue University to provide students a pathway to college. They already have one school in Indianapolis and will open a second this summer.

And they want to keep expanding.

The head of the school tells 14 News they are looking at several cities across the state and are keeping the conversation open here in Evansville. He says some of their decision will be based on community interest.

On Tuesday, parents met to learn about what STEM is and what it can mean for kids. They are planning future meetings to generate interest and talk about how Purdue Polytechnic could have be life changing for so many students.

“They do that hands on learning," Lisa Barnett, Southside Stars Youth Zone, explains. "It is project-based learning. They’re working with actually companies in the city. Working on real solutions to real problems, but at the same time learning all the skills they need to to be successful in college and their career later.”

“We’re just in the investigative stage for schools outside of Indianapolis," Scott Bess, Head of Purdue Polytechnic High School in Indianapolis, says. "It’s not a decade away or even five years away. We’d love to have schools outside of Indianapolis in the next couple of years.”

Evansville currently has two STEM schools. Helfrich Park STEM Academy is for grades sixth through eighth. New Tech Institute is for grades nine through twelve.

If a Purdue Polytechnic High School opens here, we are told it will stand alone from, but would still have collaboration with the public school system.

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