Purdue Polytechnic High School is finalist for XQ: The Super School Project

Purdue Polytechnic High School

At the end of May, the Purdue Polytechnic High School, a finalist for XQ: The Super School Project, submitted its final application as part of the national challenge to rethink high school. If the Purdue Polytechnic High School design is selected as one of the winning proposals, it will receive $10 million over the next five years to help build its Super School. At least five projects will be selected.

Scott Bess, the inaugural head of school for Purdue Polytechnic High School, said the team’s excitement to be a part of the Super School process is palpable.

“You can feel the passion. You can feel the desire to create something that is totally different and all with a solid foundation of Purdue’s academic excellence,” Bess said.

The Purdue Polytechnic High School team has worked with faculty and administrators from the Purdue Polytechnic Institute at Purdue University to design a high school learning atmosphere and curriculum to meet the needs of students and the city of Indianapolis.

“High school is more than just perseverance. It is about exploration and discovery,” Bess said.

The planned high school’s curriculum blends K-12 and postsecondary education with an infusion of industry leadership and participation. The goal of the high school is to equip an underserved student population with career and technical skills that mirror the needs of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) workforce.

Some of the new high school’s students will be able to earn an associate degree while they are in the school. Others will want to continue their education in college, and they will have a tighter link to Purdue University. Others may find they gained enough skills to enter the workforce.

“We have the opportunity to give high school students clear pathways to a wide continuum of success – to college or the workforce,” said Brooke Huntington, assistant dean for K-12 Outreach for the Purdue Polytechnic Institute, who has led the steering committee during its planning stages.

Winners of the XQ Super School challenge will be announced in August.

For more information about the Purdue Polytechnic High School, contact Brooke Huntington at bhunting@purdue.edu or visit the website (polytechnic.purdue.edu/high-school). 

About XQ: The Super School Project

XQ: The Super School Project launched in September 2015 as an open call to rethink and redesign the American high school. Thousands of applicants and tens of thousands of supporters from towns and cities across the country have united to take on this important work. Since its launch, XQ has proven to be more than a challenge to create innovative high schools. It is a growing movement to reimagine what is possible for public education in America, and a hub for community voices, cutting edge ideas, and expert resources to make real change possible. Follow XQ on Twitter.