Friday, May 22, 2020
For anyone who may have missed our live stream of the 2020 Senior Recognition Night, or for anyone who just wants to watch it again, we’re posting it here for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy!
Thursday, May 21, 2020
An email went out earlier today from Dr. Kendra Lowery, Assistant Dean, announcing that Dr. Dain Kavars will be the Interim Executive Director, effective July 1, 2020, for the 2020-2021 academic year. Vickie Barton, who has been at the Academy since its beginning, is retiring on June 30.
Here is a brief message from Dr. Kavars:
Putting “Vickie Barton” and “retiring” in the same sentence is still hard for me to believe. There has never been an Indiana Academy without her! As I prepare to step into this position, I know I have some huge shoes to fill. I cannot overstate Vickie’s contributions to the Academy. On a personal level, I greatly valued her guidance and advice, and I am still having a hard time picturing the Academy without her walking the halls. She’s not leaving the Muncie area, so she knows that I expect her to make an appearance now and then!
Although I have met many of you, I have not had the opportunity to meet everyone, so let me provide a brief introduction. I started at the Academy in Fall 2006 as a full-time teacher, teaching physics and astronomy courses. I moved into my current role, Associate Director of Academic Affairs, in Fall 2015, no longer teaching physics, but continuing to teach astronomy. Each year seems like a dream, to be able to work at a school as wonderful as the Indiana Academy. Working with the amazing faculty and staff, and having the opportunity to work with gifted students every day is a dream come true.
I am very excited to move into this new role. COVID-19 brings many unknowns and challenges to the Academy in the coming year. At the same time, every new challenge is a new opportunity for the Academy. I know you likely have many questions. More information will come in the weeks ahead. I will be working very closely with Vickie, as well as our Superintendent and Assistant Dean, to transition and hit the ground running on July 1.
Associate Director of Academic Affairs
Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics, and Humanities
Dr. Lowery’s Message:
Dear Indiana Academy Community:
On behalf of the Indiana Academy Interim Executive Director Search Committee, I am pleased to announce that Dain Kavars has accepted our offer to serve as the Interim Executive Director for the 2020-2021 school year. He will start his role on July 1, 2020.
We are confident that Dain will be successful as he leads the Academy through a year of challenges due to COVID-19, while continuing to uphold the mission and further the goals of the Academy. Congratulations, Dain!
Kendra Lowery, PhD [she/her/hers]
Assistant Dean for School Engagement
Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership
Teachers College Room 1011
Ball State University | (765) 285-8618
Monday, May 18, 2020
We’re just going to leave this right here.
Thursday, May 7, 2020
Dear Class of 2020,
Thank you for participating in our graduation survey. We received 165 responses (parents were asked to respond as well). From your replies, it is clear that you want an in-person graduation ceremony no matter when it may be. To this end, we are hoping for an on-campus graduation ceremony for you sometime this fall.
There are challenges and many potential unknowns about the fall, including how dissimilar it may need to be from the traditional Academy ceremonies in the past.
- The governor may still call for restrictions for large groups.
- Ball State may still restrict large group gatherings on campus.
- COVID-19 infections could still be increasing.
- Some of our 2020 graduates will not be able to attend on that date due to college, distance, or other plans.
- We may have to limit the number of individuals who can attend.
- It may need to be outside and could be impacted by inclement weather.
If we are not able to hold graduation in the fall, perhaps for some of the above reasons, we hope to plan one for early next year. And if for any reason neither of those times are possible, we will find another date!
If you think there is a possibility that you will not be able to attend the graduation ceremonies, we would like you to send in a picture of yourself in your graduation garb, wearing your medals, stoles, and cords. Those photos will be shown when your name is read at the ceremony. You can send them to Mr. Raleigh at craleigh.
Additionally, we are still planning on having our Senior recognition night on Friday May 22, 2020 at 7:00 pm. This program will be on-line and possibly live streamed.
Karen Workman’s video of your baby pictures, graduation pictures, and your quotes will be shown, as faculty read the clubs and activities you have been a part of while in high school. Scholarships will be announced and there will be a surprise video at the end. We will give you more information on how to view the evening program as the time gets closer.
We are working to give you an in-person graduation if it is at all within our prerogative, hopefully sooner than later. You definitely deserve one!
Dr. Vickie Barton
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
The results are in from the National Latin Exam, and congratulations are due to the students below for their achievements:
Emma Leedy – Cum Laude distinction
Eric Blacklidge – Cum Laude distinction
Natalie Williams – Maxima Cum Laude distinction Meredith Fairman – Magna Cum Laude distinction
This exam was taken by Latin students across the entire country. While everyone at the Academy who took the exam did well, receiving a mark of distinction means that compared to peers across the country these students have excelled. It is important to note that Natalie Williams and Meredith Fairman are second year Latin students, but take the Latin 3 (as opposed to Latin 2) exam because the Academy operates under an accelerated curriculum/dual credit. This means that they have received distinction in a year beyond where they would typically be expected to be.
Congratulations to all who took the exam! Our Latin students are truly extraordinary!
Monday, May 4, 2020
This year’s Academic Super Bowl was held online on an individual basis, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Indiana Association of School Principals (IASP) stated, “We are happy to announce that we have posted the awards for the Senior Individual 2020 Academic Super Bowl on our website iasp.org/students/academic-super-bowl. We had 1,426 individual responses on the senior level. The top 15 percent of our scores will be recognized for first, second, and third place awards.”
With the challenges brought on by the e-learning environment, most of our students opted to not participate because of their heavy workloads. Here are our results:
In Math, Wenhan Tang and Shivali Singreddy participated and scored within the top 35%.
In Interdisciplinary, Derek Park participated and scored within the top 26%.
In Social Studies, Derek Park scored in the top 8%, and earned a second-place ribbon!
In English: Jalyn Upshaw scored in the top 8%, and earned a second-place ribbon!
Congratulations to all of the Academy participants!
Monday, April 27, 2020
A recent article written by Social Studies instructor Mr. John Marsh, “Teaching During a Pandemic – a Century Ago,” has been published on the home page of History News Network. HNN is perhaps the biggest professional history journal online with 1.5 million page views per month.
A different version of the article with more Muncie-specific information and a photo of Mr. Marsh’s grandparents’ business was published a few weeks ago in the Muncie Journal, and was picked up by Google News and Newsbreak, also reaching a national audience.
Thursday, April 16, 2020
The Indiana Academy and Ball State University Teachers College have put together a document outlining our Continuous Learning Plan implemented for the duration of this crisis.
Thursday, April 9, 2020
Academy Students and Parents:
Given the announcement by the Governor last week cancelling in-person classes for the rest of the school term, we sadly will need to cancel the in-person Indiana Academy Commencement Ceremony scheduled for May 23, 2020. These are unprecedented times and it would not be judicious of us to bring our students back to campus for our traditional ceremony. We were all hoping our Indiana Academy seniors and families would be able to celebrate with us at our May ceremony in Emens Auditorium, but our traditional way of celebrating our graduates is going to need to be different this year.
I realize this is just one more piece of disappointing news that you have received in recent weeks. Please know that we intend to celebrate our Class of 2020 seniors in the best way possible given the circumstance we are in with the COVID-19 virus. Our thoughts this far, are to hold a series of online graduation events. We could celebrate our seniors with two virtual ceremonies, the first on the evening of Friday, May 22, at 7 p.m. (our Academy Awards ceremony), and then an online graduation ceremony on Saturday, May 23 starting at 11:30 a.m. All would be prerecorded and released for collective viewing at these scheduled times.
We are also thinking that each senior can don their graduation regalia and take a picture or short video to send to us. The picture or video would be used in the ceremony and shown when your name is read. We would be asking the faculty and staff to do the same as they send messages of congratulations during the virtual graduation ceremony. There would still be presentations by Academy Seniors, a commencement speaker, and pomp and circumstance.
Those are our thoughts, but this is your graduation. Your input is vital to making these celebrations the best they can possibly be given our situation this year. We really want the graduation events to reflect your preferences, so we are asking for you to share your thoughts and ideas. We will be collecting your ideas via Mr. Raleigh (craleigh), and sharing them with the graduation committee. Since we will need some time to put it all together, please make sure to respond promptly by April 24th.
Other graduation actions that are already in progress:
- Karen Workman is collecting your baby pictures and senior pictures along with your quotes for Friday evening.
- Jostens will be sending your orders (announcements, cap and gown, medal, cords, etc.) to your home. (If you have questions about your order, please call Jostens at 317-326-2782)
Our hope is that sometime in late summer we might be able to invite you all to gather back at the Academy to celebrate you in person. If this is something you would be interested in attending please indicate so by using the email provided.
Thank you for your continued understanding and patience. Class of 2020, you are all a remarkable, accomplished, bright, kind, talented, and an outstanding group of human beings. Know that walking across a stage in May will not change that fact.
WE ARE ACADEMY!
Dr. Vickie Barton, Executive Director
Friday, April 3, 2020
Dear students, parents and guardians,
A few questions have come in regarding possible changes in graduation requirements for seniors. Below is part of the information sent to schools from State Superintendent of Education, Dr. Jennifer McCormick. Please read the comments in red boxes on how each statement affects the Academy seniors of 2020.
Communication from Dr. McCormick
In accordance with Section 13.B. of Executive Order 20-05, the undersigned hereby adopt the attached policy document in order to provide flexibility with respect to Indiana’s graduation requirements to schools and students for the 2020 graduation cohort.
- Has met all of the course and credit requirements for the specific diploma designation based on a combination of high school credits earned prior to and the courses in which a student was enrolled as of March 19, 2020, when the Governor issued the statewide school closure order; and
- Meets any virtual or remote learning participation requirements established by the governing body of the local school corporation in response to the statewide school closure order issued by the Governor; and
- Meets any additional graduation requirements established by the governing body of the local school corporation pursuant to IC 20-32-4-1.5(3) prior to the school closure order issued by the Governor.
Graduation Examination & Graduation Pathways
In addition to the flexibility granted to determine whether a student has met the course and credit requirements for the Core 40 diploma, Core 40 with Academic Honors, or Core 40 with Technical Honors, the following requirements have been waived for students in the 2020 graduation cohort:
- The successful completion of the graduation examination as required in IC 20-32-4-1.5(1); or
- A graduation waiver pursuant to IC 20-32-4-4 for students who do not achieve a passing score on the graduation examination.
Academy seniors have already completed the necessary Graduation Examination exam or Graduation Pathways requirements.
In Summary – the waivers announced yesterday do not change the graduation requirements or expectations for the Academy Seniors of 2020. They must complete the e-learning classes and the Extended Curriculum requirements already in progress.
Please contact Dr. Jeff Smith at jsmith4 if you have questions.