Purdue Polytechnic High School
Purdue Polytechnic High School – a concept that says the quality of one’s education shouldn’t be based on one’s zip code.
Powered by Purdue University with resources from Purdue Polytechnic Institute, PPHS was created to serve as an engine of upward mobility by building a pipeline of low-income and minority students to counteract the unacceptably small number emerging from the public education system, not just in Indiana, but nationwide.
Here, students, families, PPHS coaches, and Purdue officials share their stories – their hopes and dreams of persistence and perseverance of changing an education system, addressing next-generation learning and rebuilding communities. Now with three locations, PPHS helps students and families prepare for the next chapter of their lives: pathways to college, lifelong learning, and careers in advanced manufacturing, technology and jobs not even envisioned yet.
“I’ve dreamed of going to Purdue since I was in the sixth grade.”
– Kayla Owens, Purdue Class of 2025
Frequently asked question about Purdue Polytechnic HS
Why we’re doing what we’re doing
Purdue Polytechnic High Schools are re-imagining the high school experience across Indiana and preparing students for the next generation of careers in STEM and advanced manufacturing and technology.
Because we are reimagining what high school looks like, we know you have questions. We get them all the time from parents, students and community leaders. If there is something you want to know that you can’t find, feel free to email us.
What is Purdue Polytechnic High School (PPHS) and is Purdue really involved with the running of the school?
Purdue created the Purdue Polytechnic High Schools to build new K-12 pathways that lead to Purdue, especially for Hoosier students who are underserved by traditional high schools and underrepresented in higher education.
Established in 2017, the growing, multi-school PPHS system immerses students and their families in an innovative learning community. PPHS offers tuition free, authentic, STEM-focused experiences that prepare high school students for a successful future. These experiences include internships, industry projects, dual-credit courses and technical certifications. PPHS also offers its students a unique path to college; graduates who achieve Purdue’s admission requirements are assured admission to one of Purdue’s over 200 majors.
The concept of PPHS was approved in 2015 by Purdue University’s Board of Trustees. The first one – now PPHS Schweitzer Center at Englewood – opened its doors in 2017. PPHS Schweitzer Center at Englewood opened in its current location in July 2020. PPHS North opened in fall 2019 and PPHS South Bend opened in fall 2020.
In his to the Purdue community, President Mitch Daniels wrote on how PPHS is “perhaps the most important single initiative we have underway” and how the first class of seniors will be graduating in June 2021.
PPHS is a separate entity from Purdue University. PPHS has a leadership staff and its own board of directors comprised of industry, community and Purdue leaders.
Is PPHS a private school?
All locations of PPHS are public, tuition-free charter schools, and all locations are licensed by the Indiana Department of Education. The PPHS Schweitzer Center at Englewood is an innovation school through a partnership with Indianapolis Public Schools.
Are there any residency requirements for PPHS?
There are no residency requirements for PPHS schools. Some students live in the same neighborhood as the schools, and others commute into the school. All students need to apply for admission into the school. (Virtual tours are available for interested students and parents/guardians). PPHS schools in Indianapolis primarily serve the Indianapolis Public Schools district. The PPHS SB location primarily serves the South Bend Community School Corporation. There are PPHS students who come from outside of those school districts.
Do PPHS students automatically get into Purdue?
If a PPHS student earns a 3.4 GPA and 1050 on the SAT or 20 on the ACT and graduates from high school and achieve Purdue’s admission requirements, they can gain admission to one of Purdue’s over 200 majors.
Why do you call the teachers “coaches”?
We’re re-imagining the high school experience so we’re also re-imagining the role of a teacher. We call them coaches because that is what they are doing – they are doing educational coaching with the students. Coaches meet with their personal learning community every morning and afternoon to identify student goals, monitor progress and check-in on well-being. Throughout the day, students can seek out any coach for issues they are having.
We’re always looking for new coaches to join our team as we continue transforming the high school experience. If you’re interested in learning about new educational outreach and opportunities, find out more on what we can do together.
What is PPHS’ commitment to the community?
Our goal is to provide Indiana communities (Indianapolis and South Bend, where we are located) with a pipeline of highly educated graduates on their pathway to Purdue or higher education institution or enter the workforce in a career in STEM or advanced manufacturing or technology. We work with local companies to engage students in hands-on experiences as well as community organizations. For example, at PPHS South Bend, we have hired a community outreach coordinator from South Bend to engage with community leaders and residents, gather feedback, answer questions and provide support whenever needed. The PPHS leadership team and coaches are engaged with students and families and are available to address issues.
What are industry partners and how does my employer become one?
PPHS partners with local businesses and organizations to provide students hands-on experience in health care, information technology, engineering, environmental sciences and more. Our industry partners give tours of their facilities, pose challenge questions to our students and judge their final pitches. As juniors and seniors, our students have the opportunity to complete internships with many of our industry partners, gaining valuable hands-on experience. For more information, please visit our Partners webpage or email Susie Howard, PPHS chief of staff.
We know PPHS pushes a STEM education. Do you have English classes or art programs?
PPHS students have to complete an Indiana honors or CORE 40 diploma. PPHS provides a wide variety of English and art classes and experiences. In addition, there are several extracurricular clubs, including show choir, art, chess, debate, and language and culture club. The clubs can change each year due to interest from the students.
I am interested in partnering with PPHS and learning more about using the PPHS-designed curriculum in my local school setting. Whom do I contact to learn more?
PPHS has a goal to expand to other parts of Indiana to provide STEM-related educational opportunities to underrepresented and underserved populations. PPHS is also looking for 100 partners in Indiana and across the U.S. who are interested in changing the secondary education system. If you are interested in learning more about partnerships, please contact Scott Bess, PPHS head of schools.
Do you have sports teams?
PPHS Schweitzer Center at Englewood and PPHS North have athletic teams. PPHS Schweitzer Center offers all major athletics including football, basketball, track and field, cross country, baseball, cheerleading, volleyball and wrestling. PPHS North offers track and field, baseball, soccer, basketball and cross country. PPHS South Bend is looking to add sports teams in the future.
How do I contact PPHS
PURDUE POLYTECHNIC HIGH SCHOOL SCHWEITZER CENTER AT ENGLEWOOD
3029 E Washington St., Indianapolis, IN 46201
PURDUE POLYTECHNIC HIGH SCHOOL NORTH
1405 Broad Ripple Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46220
PURDUE POLYTECHNIC HIGH SCHOOL SOUTH BEND
635 S. Lafayette Blvd., South Bend, IN 46601
PURDUE POLYTECHNIC HIGH SCHOOL NETWORK OFFICE & REGISTRAR
6229 Indianola Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220
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