Critique and consequence, a theoretical analysis of Indianapolis Prep

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Tharp-Perrin, Carol
Thompson, Jay C.
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This project involved an analysis of the theoretical foundations for Indianapolis Prep; an alternative school for about 50 students ages 14 to 18 years who are on probation with the Juvenile Court of Marion County, Indiana. The accepted purpose of Indianapolis Prep is to prepare students to make a successful transition from the Juvenile Center through a transition academy and through a semester of success in a regular high school to high school graduation. For the population involved, the traditional path to a high school diploma is not viewed as the best alternative.Indianapolis Prep is part of the national “Cities in Schools” project; a project which appears to have the potential for making a substantial impact on the future direction of American education.The outcomes of the project were documented in various forms since the traditional format of preparing one large piece of writing with an introduction and a conclusion was inadequate. The process of the study served as an effective means for shaping the documentation of outcomes. The writer kept a journal of observations of Indianapolis Prep as well as one on reflections regarding her participation in the school. Compiling these writings into a summary produced an interesting anecdotal document of Indy Prep’s development in theory and in practice. This anecdotal record developed into an anthology of choice writings, proposals, reports, and poems and prose, all narrated and tied together with summarized journal writings.The following components were included in the creative project report:A statement of the creative project.A handout used by the “Cities in Schools” project to introduce and explain Propinquity, and organizational concept of interagency services.A description of the plan, implementation, and outcomes of the Sophomore Academy, a forerunner to Indy Prep.Examples of students’ poems and prose as well as writings of the investigator.An evaluative report of Indy Prep’s participation in the Ball State University staff development project. This report was compiled from observations, interviews, and notes on weekly SDP conferences and meetings, as well as information from monthly Ball State conducted workshops. Examples of contracts developed through the staff development program were included.A component of several essays in which thoughts and theories derived from various readings along with the writer’s experiences and study of Indy Prep were formulated and/or systematically organized.The final component was a bibliography of readings.