IPS plan would relocate Center for Inquiry #2

The significant overhaul proposed for Indianapolis Public Schools facilities would result in the closing of the Center for Inquiry at School 2, the popular Chatham Arch magnet school.

But the full program would continue instead at a Holy Cross school just a few blocks to the east – at least for the next school year.

The plan unveiled at Superintendent Aleesia Johnson’s Sept. 13 State of the District speech would move School 2 students to Washington Irving School 14 for the 2023-24 school year. But starting the next school year, School 14 would serve only students in grades K-4. Fifth- through seventh-grade students would instead attend Longfellow school in Fountain Square. That school would become, like School 2 before it, an International Baccalaureate program.

The far-reaching Rebuilding Stronger Plan has yet to be approved by the district’s school board, with a vote expected later this fall. The plan calls for seven schools to close or merge, while 39 others will change the grades they serve.

Families now served by CFI at School 2 can opt to make a new school choice for the next school year through the Enroll Indy Lottery system. Those families will receive enhanced priority for the 2023-2024 school year.

According to the district’s website, IPS will determine a process to take community input on the future use of the CFI 2 building. The property sits alongside the Indianapolis Cultural Trail in a location just off Mass Ave, which would seem to be prime for redevelopment.

The plan indicated that the School 2 building is not in good shape and is currently over-capacity at 108 percent. School 14, meanwhile, is in better physical shape, with improvements planned to drive its rating even higher.

The Rebuilding Stronger report indicated IPS has engaged in more than 50 community meetings (both virtual and in person) with nearly 2,000 attendees. Details of the comprehensive plan can be found at myips.org/rebuilding-stronger.

PHOTO ABOVE: Center for Inquiry School #2 located in Chatham Arch neighborhood.