App_Full_Hope_2003doc by tyndale




            Charter School Application
                  August 6, 2003

                   Presented to
 The Honorable Mayor of Indianapolis Bart Peterson


             The Board of Directors of
  Hope Renaissance Classical Academy Foundation
               Indianapolis, Indiana
I.      Our Vision
        A. Mission
    Hope Renaissance Classical Academy (HRCA), working with parents and community, will provide
Indianapolis students, grades five through eight, an integrated, rigorous, standards-based, classical
curriculum that encourages students to think logically and critically, to communicate effectively and to
embrace life-long learning as demonstrated by their successful pursuit of higher education. This core
curriculum will be taught within a positive learning community guided by a respect for others.

         B. Need
         HRCA will serve middle school students who, by virtue of their age, have unique cognitive and
developmental needs. Early adolescence is a critically important time of life when patterns of learning and
behavior are formed. Logistically, HRCA intends to locate in Northwest Indianapolis, but we expect to
attract students and families from throughout the community who are interested in pursuing a rigorous
academic option. Many of these families will have students who are struggling, who are bored, who are
succumbing to adolescent peer pressure, or who are falling through the cracks of a large school
environment. HRCA will offer a specific middle school option to address these needs, a classical model
unavailable at any other public school in the area.
         We consider the growing Hispanic population in Northwest Indianapolis to be a major target
audience. From discussions with the El Puente Project Family Development Coordinator Rita Cano, we
know there is both a strong need and desire within the Hispanic community for a rigorous academic
option that is sensitive to their language and culture. HRCA effectively meets those criteria through its
inclusive curriculum, emphasis on Spanish language acquisition and cultural breadth.
         Specific critical areas that need to be addressed within these target audiences include low ISTEP
scores in math and language arts, at both the 6th and 8th grade levels, and the problem of suspensions at the
middle-school level. In large urban areas such as Indianapolis, the general trend has been that as students
advance to higher levels of education, suspension and expulsion rates climb as standardized test scores
decline. Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will address these needs through a rigorous core
curriculum, small school and class size, and a positive learning community.

Rigorous Core Curriculum: Classical Model
         Success in an academically rigorous curriculum has proven to be a powerful indicator of college
attendance and matriculation and significantly mitigates the effects of socioeconomic status. By offering
such a curriculum, HRCA will provide students with the essential background to succeed in high school
and college.
         Increasing numbers of public and private classical schools have opened in the wake of Marva
Collins‘ success at Westside Preparatory School in Chicago. Specifically targeting the needs of low-
achieving inner city students, Collins successfully applied principles of classical education at Westside
Preparatory School and gained national acclaim for student success.
         Other classical curriculums offered in urban settings have provided innovative options with
measurable success. For example:
         • Three classical magnet schools in urban Chicago have produced impressive results, with inner-
city students from diverse ethnic backgrounds performing far above the state averages. These schools
share the significant common characteristics of small school and class size.
                 •At McDade Classical Elementary School on Chicago‘s south side, over 97% of students
                 are African-American, Hispanic or Asian-American. In 2001, 100% of the fifth grade
                 students passed the Illinois Standard Achievement Test (ISAT) in the areas of math,
                 reading and writing.
                 • At Poe Classical Elementary School, also on the south side of Chicago, more than 92%
                 of the students are African-American, Hispanic or Asian-American. One hundred percent
                 of the fifth graders passed the math section of the ISAT, 96% passed the writing section
                 and 92% passed the reading section.

                 • Decatur Classical Elementary School has a diverse student body, with over half of its
                 students divided among African-American, Hispanic, Asian and American Indian. Again,
                 fifth graders performed impressively, with 100% passing the math and writing sections
                 and 98% passing the reading section of the ISAT.
         • Tempe Preparatory Academy, a classical charter school, registered second in the state of
Arizona in 1998 on the Stanford 9 tests. With a state average 17% pass rate on the AIMS math test,
Tempe students passed at a rate of 80%. A demographically comparable school nearby passed only 25%
of their students. This year, Tempe ranked first on a statewide Parent Satisfaction Survey.
         • Objective assessments such as the Iowa Test of Basic Skills have measured significant
improvement in the achievement of children at The Academy for Classical Education, in Houston, TX.
This measure demonstrates that among 3rd graders, reading ability increased by 29% over the course of
the school year. Language skills increased by 13%, math skills by 78% and science skills by 18%.
Students improved by approximately two grade levels in all core areas.

Small School and Class Size
         Small class and school size is central and integral to HRCA‘s mission. Scores of studies have
demonstrated the success of small class sizes for serving all students, particularly students at risk of
failure. Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will promote an ethos of community learning within a
small school environment. Student/teacher ratios will be kept low and class size will remain at 20 or less.
Current research shows that large class sizes are a detriment to student achievement, especially with
students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Small schools promote higher achievement, better
attendance, and according to one study, more extracurricular activity than large schools (Cotton, 1996).
Other research has shown that students are more satisfied and far more likely to succeed in small schools
(Pittman & Haughwout, 1987). In addition, student behavior is improved within small schools and
children are far less likely to commit infractions, particularly economically ―at risk‖ students (Stockard &
Mayberry, 1992). Small school size and the nurturing of an ethos of community significantly reduce the
influence of poverty on student achievement.
         Hope Renaissance Classical Academy‘s target population is children living on Indianapolis‘
northwest side. Based on our own research, we learned that the average middle school class size in this
area is above 25 children per classroom, with the highest ratio being found in grade six. Educational
research suggests that total enrollment in elementary schools should optimally remain below 400
students. Indianapolis Public Schools recently conducted research that shows that urban high school
students are more successful in highly personalized environments.

Positive Learning Community
         Parent and family participation is also central to the mission of HRCA and vital to the success of
students as well as building a community. Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will be organized as a
family entity both from within and without. We intend to provide learning opportunities for adults,
demonstration nights, English language tutoring and mentoring, and technology instruction that allow
students and parents to use school computers to produce and access web based information. Our
integration of art, music and drama into the curriculum will serve to engage both parents and community
members. Parents will be encouraged to take part in extra-curricular decisions and the production of
plays, art exhibits and musical performances.
         HRCA will also implement the Circle of Power and Respect (CPR) model to assist in
building a safe and exciting learning environment ―The way we begin each day in our classroom sets the
tone for learning and speaks volumes about what and whom we value, our expectations for the way we
will treat each other, and about the way we believe learning occurs,‖ (The Morning Meeting Book,
Roxanne Krista). Therefore, HRCA will measure the success of the CPR implementation by how students
exhibit the social skills of cooperation, assertion, responsibility, empathy and self-control.
         All communities are challenged to address low achievement and declining family involvement
particularly among middle-school age children. The founding group of Hope Renaissance Classical

Academy is pleased to submit this prospectus to offer an option for addressing that need within the
community. We are confident, based on the experience of similar schools nationally, that our school will
represent a widely sought-after choice for children and parents. We are particularly excited about the
opportunity to serve the ethnically and socio-economically diverse student population in our target area,
including students with special needs.

        C. Goals
        The following goals have been identified as most important for HRCA with relationship to:
Academic Performance, Organizational Viability, and School-Specific Objectives. Our goals will be
achieved through the advancement of classical instruction and the pursuit of academic excellence in a
diverse community.

Academic Performance
         Based on the principle that all children are entitled to an education that prepares them to achieve
their highest potential and aligned with our mission to provide students with an integrated, academically
rigorous, standards-based curriculum, Hope Renaissance Classical Academy has established the
following academic goals:

Goal # 1. Academic achievement at or beyond grade level: HRCA will provide children with ordered
basic knowledge and the skills and tools of learning. This goal will be accomplished and assessed using
multiple measures including, but not limited to, the following:
         Skills acceleration: Students at Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will be identified
            through initial assessment to determine need for skills acceleration in the areas of reading and
            mathematics. Those scoring below their appropriate grade level in basic skills will better their
            skills by at least one grade level by year‘s end. Those students who enter at two or more
            grade levels below their appropriate level will be brought up to grade level within the first
            two years. This goal will be accomplished through skills acceleration blocks with teams,
            individualized instruction and mentoring.
         ISTEP: HRCA will provide the instruction and support necessary for students to pass the
            ISTEP exams in both reading/language arts and mathematics that are currently given in
            grades six and eight.
                 Until actual base-line scores and pass-rates are available for HRCA students, the school
            has identified 12 middles schools that are located in the region in which HCRA intends to
            locatei. HRCA is using the average of the pass-rates on ISTEP+ for these schools as an
            approximation of base-line HRCA pass-rates. The average pass-rates, along with the range of
            pass-rates are reflected in the below table. HRCA intends to realize annual increases in the
            pass-rate for its ―nonmobile cohort group‖ (as defined by the Indiana Department of
            Education) at a rate of 10% of the previous year‘s pass-rate until the pass-rate is equal to or
            exceeds the highest of the 12 regional middle schools pass rates in each tested area. When
            actual base-line data is collected from the first years‘ HRCA students, the following ―target
            goals‖ table (see below) will be adjusted accordingly.

             Average 6th Grade     Average 8th Grade        Average 6th        Average 6th Grade
             Language Arts         Language Arts            Grade Math         Math ISTEP+
             ISTEP+ Pass-          ISTEP+ Pass-             ISTEP+ Pass-       Pass-Rate/
             Rate/ Range (low-     Rate/ Range (low-        Rate/              Range (low-high)
             high)                 high)                     Range (low-
              51%/ (33%-67%)        41% (13%-58%)           53% (30%-68%)       49% (28%-60%)

 Targeted         6th Grade             8th Grade              6th Grade           8th Grade
  ISTEP         Language Arts         Language Arts           Math ISTEP+         Math ISTEP+
 Pass-Rate    ISTEP+ Pass-Rate      ISTEP+ Pass-Rate           Pass-Rate           Pass-Rate
 at HRCA
   05-06            57%                   45%                     58%                 48%
   06-07            63%                   50%                     64%                 53%
   07-08          67%-69%                 55%                   68%-70%               59%
   08-09          67%-69%               58%-61%                 68%-70%             60%-65%
        Our school improvement plan will reflect goals for the additional ISTEP+ subject areas
        predicated on baseline HRCA ISTEP-Plus scores. HRCA will also monitor school success and
        skills acquisition through additional standardized assessments with the goal of continuous
        individual improvement for each student.
         National standardized tests: Standardized assessments will include the Iowa Test of Basic
             Skills and the National Latin Exam for grades 6 –8, in addition to the ISTEPs.
             Students at Hope Renaissance Classical will achieve the following benchmarks:
             a) No fewer than 90% of ongoing HRCA students (enrolled for at least two years) will
                 improve their performance on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills by five percentile rankings or
             b) Annual assessments for Latin and Spanish study will be administered at each grade level,
                 and achievement levels for ongoing students will meet or exceed national mean scores.

Goal #2. Academic success and enthusiasm that will prepare for success in higher education. All
HRCA students will accomplish the same integrated course of study, which will strengthen understanding
and encourage intellectual and aesthetic creativity.
        Students will develop the individual study habits and skills needed to excel as they move into
           high school and continue to pursue challenging academic course work, including Advanced
           Placement (AP). These skills and attitudes will allow students to pursue college and
           university options. HRCA will develop relationships with Indianapolis public and private
           high schools in order to assist students, track their progress and determine the success of this
           goal, monitoring numbers of students who take SAT exams, and those who enter advanced
           placement high school classes
           a) Students will keep a writing portfolio that will compile their best work and will assist
               them with self-evaluation and setting higher standards.
           b) Students will present and defend a science research project and paper each year. Each
               project will include narrative or descriptors of historical developments leading to their
               particular project focus.
           c) Sixth grade students (and above) will participate in a structured debate or dramatic
               performance each school year.
           d) All students will read at least 10 fiction or nonfiction works each year and demonstrate
               understanding through writing or a developed project.

            e) Students will demonstrate a culminating project within their humanities/social studies
               block to be assessed as an Exhibition of Mastery.

        These requirements highlight what is most important to the school with relationship to academics
and will be defined further in the assessment plan that follows.

Organizational viability
Goal 1: A strong governance and financial plan
         Hope Renaissance Classical Academy has made the necessary plans and arrangements to develop
and manage the financial resources to implement its objectives. HRCA is prepared to offer the
community a sound instructional program on the basis of the fiscal resources provided through local,
state, and federal school funding. The HRCA Board plans to augment public funds with contributions and
foundation/education grants. We have formed a wide range of community partnerships that are expected
to provide in-kind support for the unique HRCA curriculum and instructional programs in order to foster
a rich educational experience for children at a relatively modest cost.
         Hope Renaissance Classical Academy has made arrangements with the Helicon Associate group
of Trenton, Michigan to assist with management of its fiscal needs. Helicon Associates currently provides
business support for nine charter schools serving 4,000 children on 12 campuses. Helicon Associates was
chosen because it is a business services company rather than a traditional Education Management
Company (EMO). By contracting with Helicon, HRCA is free to fashion a curriculum and instructional
program that is unique and specifically designed to meet the needs of the population it serves.
         With a decade of experience serving charter schools, including a number that have been assisted
through the start-up phase, Helicon has the committed resources to assist HRCA in the necessary
financial borrowing, cash flow management, payroll management and benefits administration, equipment
leases, and facility acquisition and leasing or purchase. The HRCA Board has developed, in consultation
with Helicon, a management plan and budget that anticipates operation within the fiscal resources that
can be reasonably assumed to be available from public sources. Aware of the conservative fiscal
environment in Indiana, Helicon and HRCA have taken into account the need to borrow funds during the
start up phase and first year of operation. Helicon will secure a loan for that purpose and has factored the
payments into the budget and cash flow projections. HRCA will eventually accumulate a modest reserve
to lessen the need for annual borrowing through careful management of its assets.

Goal 2: Staff development and student recruitment
          An excellent school depends upon an excellent staff, and HRCA will recruit widely to fill crucial
staff positions that are vital to the learning experience. We will conduct a broad search for teachers and
provide those hired with the support and resources to be successful, including professional development
through in-service training and professional conferences. Once hired, HRCA teachers will be provided
with continued opportunities for professional development, coordinated dialogue with colleagues, and the
kind of autonomy that raises job satisfaction. We will seek to retain at least half of our teaching staff over
the first five years working to build a strong and collaborative faculty that will know and serve students
well. We will survey teachers regarding job satisfaction and use those reports to implement
improvements. Surveys will inform personnel policy and reinforce the collaborative environment.
          HRCA‘s Board of Directors and Advisory Board possess considerable expertise in marketing and
promotion as well as in reaching out to diverse communities. We will make every effort to reach families
who are traditionally least served by educational options and opportunities. HRCA will successfully
develop and implement a marketing plan that educates and informs diverse communities about this
middle school option. Presentations at neighborhood groups, the Hispanic Education Center, community
centers and town hall-style meetings will be promoted through a variety of networks. All marketing
materials will be printed in Spanish and English and will be distributed through businesses, churches and
community organizations. HRCA will measure its success at recruitment through quantitative and
qualitative analysis of interest calls, student enrollment and waiting lists.

School Specific Objectives
Goal 1: Accessibility and satisfaction. HRCA is committed to serving the community broadly and
determining satisfaction with that service.
         HRCA will become a valued community asset for Northwest Indianapolis and will actively solicit
community input and feedback through public meetings and neighborhood presentations. HRCA will
recruit at least one community representative to sit on the Board of Directors and will work to maintain a
diverse teaching staff, reflective of the communities‘ diversity. Educational partnerships within the
community have been forged and additional community partnerships will be explored and organized to
enable student service learning projects that are integrated into the school‘s curriculum.
          HRCA will build and maintain high levels of consumer satisfaction as measured through regular
parent and student surveys, focus groups and other methods. Our goal will be parent involvement that
exceeds 95% through conferences, parent organizations, technological access, newsletters, and personal
invitation, and will be measured through participation levels at school events. HRCA will also recruit one
parent to sit on the Board of Directors as a representative for parental concerns.
         HRCA will facilitate citywide access for all enrolled students by providing transportation in the
form of a bus or van that will pick up children who would otherwise be unable to attend. Car pool
organization will be facilitated through the HRCA office as a means of assistance for student transport.
HRCA has investigated contracting with a local school bus company (Laidlaw) should that prove to be
the most viable solution to transportation issues. Appropriate accommodations for transportation have
been made in HRCA‘s three-year budget projections.

Goal 2: Character development and school culture: HRCA will seek to build strong character among
students and develop a positive school culture.
         Prior to the opening of HRCA, families who have applied will be invited to an informational
meeting to encourage dialogue and provide detailed information on school goals, curriculum and
expectations for students and families. Families enrolling children will meet with staff members each
summer to ask and answer questions relating to student and family needs. Parents and students will be
asked to sign a contract that explains and outlines expectations of family involvement and of students.
Throughout the school year students and their families will maintain ongoing dialogue with teachers and
staff allowing each member of HRCA‘s learning community to become known and respected.
Through modeling, responsive classrooms and direct involvement with students and families, staff and
board members of HRCA will encourage and enhance safe learning communities and character
development. Service learning will enhance school/community relationships and demonstrate the value
placed upon outreach and good will. HRCA students will yearly produce academically enhanced service
learning projects. These projects will connect and reinforce numerous aspects of the HRCA mission:
contribution to community, academics, and respect for self and others.
         We will commit to assessing our success at character development through surveys, teacher
observations, discipline indicators and community service. The executive director, teaching staff and
HRCA Board of Directors will determine where and how improvements can be made, will review these

II.     Who We Are
        A. Description of Founding Group
        The Board of Hope Renaissance Classical Academy is comprised of persons with multiple
strengths in the areas of education, law, marketing, public relations and business. We have tangible ties to
the community and a passionate commitment to education and the success of this program.
Dina Stephens, Ph.D., who serves as President of the Board of Directors of the Hope Renaissance
Classical Academy, has taught future teachers in the areas of history, philosophy and sociology of
education. Dr. Stephens has been selected as executive director of HRCA and will step down from the
board upon receipt of the charter. Most recently, at Ball State University, Dr. Stephens participated in the

certification program for Professional Development Staff Team members in Indianapolis Public Schools,
working to build community and dialogue among teachers of inner-city students. As a parent of four, she
has worked with children for the past 28 years, including volunteer work as choir director for ages 2 to
18. In addition, she taught music classes in grades 1-8 at a private school in Indianapolis. Dr. Stephens
has a sincere understanding and appreciation for the challenges of working parents, particularly single
parents. She began her college career as a single mother of three, with a full course load, working at
various jobs as she completed three degrees. Her vision for the curriculum of Hope Renaissance Classical
Academy took shape as she researched, planned and home-schooled her son.
         Dr. Stephens also has experience as an entrepreneur and in all areas of business. She held a
management position with a technology firm based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In that capacity, she was
responsible for recruiting, training and supervising more than one hundred contractors across the country.
She wrote personnel policy and corporate reports for the company. In addition, Dr. Stephens was co-
owner/manager of a successful mobile fleet maintenance company in Wisconsin. This experience was
invaluable as she managed all aspects of a small business including, negotiating with vendors, accounting,
collections and employee recruitment.

Maureen Manier, vice president of HRCA‘s Board of Directors, taught English at private and public
high schools before pursuing a career in public relations. During the past 20 years she has held public
relations management positions in health care and at Indiana University-South Bend, Saint Mary‘s
College in South Bend and Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Ill. She currently serves as the
director of marketing communications at Butler University. Ms. Manier has extensive experience in
marketing, publications, web development, media and community relations, management and budgeting.
She has developed marketing plans for major events, recruitment efforts and reputation and fund raising
         Ms. Manier is the mother of two sons, one of whom is currently home-schooled, the other of
whom recently earned an international baccalaureate diploma at North Central High School and is a
freshman at Beloit College. She previously served on the board of directors for the cooperative school
that both her sons attended in Illinois. Ms. Manier takes an active interest in issues of literacy and
language and actively volunteers as a reading tutor for IPS. She conducts a book discussion group for
middle-school aged children in the community and is committed to founding a school that will provide a
challenging and inclusive learning environment for children.

Jay Feller, CPA, treasurer for HRCA‘s Board of Directors, is the father of three who is married to an
educator. He brings an impressive background in accounting and management to the board. Currently the
director in charge of the tax services group at Somerset Financial Services (where he has worked for 10
years), he is responsible for all the firm‘s tax matters and serves on the executive committee and
operations committee responsible for the management of the firm. Prior to his tenure with Somerset, Mr.
Feller held tax manager positions at Arthur Anderson and Ernst and Young. Mr. Feller graduated from
Butler University magna cum laude with a degree in accounting. Mr. Feller was extremely active in the
development and construction of the parochial school that his children attend, serving on a number of

Linda Anderson, JD, is a lifelong resident of Indianapolis. After graduating from Arsenal Tech High
School, she earned her bachelor‘s degree from Indiana State University, master‘s degree in
communication from Purdue University and her doctorate of jurisprudence from Indiana University
School of Law. For seven years she has served as a manager in the Indiana Family and Social Services
Administration Office of Human Resources. She manages the employment activities for FSSA‘s central
office in the areas of compensation, labor and affirmative action. She previously held positions as an
administrative law judge with the Public Employees‘ Retirement Fund, a staff attorney with the Indiana
Family and Social Services Administration, a deputy prosecutor in the child support division of the
Marion County Prosecutor‘s Office, and as a community education/public information specialist in the

Indianapolis/Marion County Office on Human Rights (now office of Equal Opportunity). Ms. Anderson
is deeply committed to equal opportunity and equal treatment and is passionate about the role education
plays in providing opportunity for all children.

Belinda Brown, JD, who has lived in Indianapolis for over 20 years, is a field attorney for the National
Labor Relations Board where she investigates unfair labor practices filed by employers, individuals and
unions. She has held that position for seven years. She previously worked with the Marion County
Prosecutor‘s Office as an enforcement supervisor, community outreach liaison and deputy prosecutor.
Ms. Brown also served as the executive for the Indiana State Employees Association and the Foundation
for the Advancement of Industrial Research (FAIR), for which she acted as a lobbyist and spokesperson.
Ms. Brown is a member of the City of Indianapolis License Review Board. She is committed to providing
students with a quality education, believing in education‘s potential to transform lives.

Kay Clay is currently an IPS art teacher. She formerly headed the art departments at both Crispus Attucks
High School and Emmerich Manual High School. Ms. Clay has won numerous educational awards,
including the IPS Teacher of the Year in 1998. She won the Outstanding Indiana Art Educator Award
presented by the Indiana Art Education Association and the Indianapolis Art Center Faculty awards in 20.
Ms. Clay has permanent collections at Bank One, the Eli Lilly Corporation, L.S. Ayres and the
Indianapolis Public Schools. Ms. Clay has a passion for teaching and an ongoing commitment to the
education of all children.

Valerie Davidson, a lifelong Indianapolis resident, has been the director of multicultural affairs at Butler
University for the past 13 years. She was recently promoted to the position of director of diversity
programs in recognition of her contributions. During her tenure at Butler she has created Butler‘s
Celebration of Diversity and Distinguished Lecture Series, conducted diversity training for students,
faculty and staff, founded Butler‘s Multicultural Resource Center, served as a faculty adviser for all
multicultural student organizations and served as Butler‘s multicultural liaison. Prior to her position at
Butler, Ms. Davidson served as a legislative assistant for the Democratic Caucus in the Indiana House of
Representatives. She has also earned a bachelor‘s and two master‘s degrees from Indiana University.
         Well-known for her commitment to and leadership in the community and her profession, Ms.
Davidson‘s activities have included: past president of the Indiana Association for Women in Education;
United Way Family Strengthening Coalition Impact Council; Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc.; Board
of Directors, Positive Forces National Diversity Roundtable and Lecture Series; Board of Directors,
United Way Leadership Triad; Board of Directors, Indianapolis Police Athletic League; Board of
Directors, Heritage Place, Inc.; Board of Directors, Indianapolis YWCA; Indianapolis Public Schools
Multicultural Education Steering Committee; Board of Directors, Washington Township Families in
Action, Inc.; Indiana Coalition of Blacks in Education; Park Tudor School - Board of Directors Long
Range Planning Committee; 2001 Indianapolis Day of the Dead Hispanic Festival Planning Committee;
2002 Spirit and Place Festival Planning Committee; and charter member of CAUSE, Inc.

Carmen Johnson, CPA, MBA, is committed to the development of charter schools as a vital alternative.
The mother of two, she teaches a course in ―Financial Management for Not-for-Profits‖ at IUPUI‘s
School of Public and Environmental Affairs. She previously served as director of audit services for the
State of Indiana Family and Social Services Administration. Ms. Johnson operates as an independent
contractor of consulting and accounting services, which she has provided to BAA Indianapolis LLC,
Ameritech, KMPG Peat Marwick, and Somerset Financial Services. Ms. Johnson is a Sunday school
teacher for Galilee Missionary Baptist Church and a board member of the Pike High School Finance

James Wong is an award winning fleet manager for Frito-Lay, Inc. He has extensive experience in all
aspects of cost control, budget and management of fleet in the largest national region for Frito-Lay, Inc.
Mr. Wong received a degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Southern Technical Institute
with a special emphasis in thermal science and engineering design. He did graduate work in the area of
manufacturing at the University of Memphis. In addition, Mr. Wong received an Associate Degree in
Arts from Reinhardt College, graduating Cum Laude.
         Mr. Wong has a strong interest in education and taught courses in engineering graphics at the
University of Memphis. He is an accomplished athlete and has given instruction in Judo at Reinhardt
College in Atlanta, GA. Mr. Wong has diverse interests and expertise in areas ranging from water and
snow skiing to classical music.

Professional Teachers within the Urban Setting: Our founder‘s team includes three teachers
who currently work within the IPS system. These teachers are also parents and community
members with a strong desire to see options within public education. Their combined
qualifications include college degrees in the areas of Interpersonal/Public Communication,
Political Science, and Russian and Slavic Studies. These teachers have a combined experience of
over 50 years working with children.

HRCA Advisory Board
Dr. Ilene G. Block, Education Consultant, Indiana Department of Education
Kerry Kohler, President, Trinity Schools
Derek Redelman, Senior Fellow, Director, Education Policy, Hudson Institute
Steven Stolen, Director, Capital Gifts, Butler University
Rita Beatriz Cano, Family Development Coordinator, El Puente Project
        at the Hispanic Education Center
Clarence Crain, Board of Directors of 100 Black Men.

          B. Community Partnerships
          HRCA has and will continue to work to develop community partnerships that enrich students‘
learning experience. HRCA will also take full advantage of the numerous educational and community
connections of its Board members to develop these and other valuable community partnerships.
Preliminary discussions have already occurred which will provide the bases for these partnerships. The
following narratives are based on those discussions and on letters included in Appendix I.
          Universities are natural partners for HRCA. The school‘s academically rigorous and
interdisciplinary curriculum provides numerous opportunities for interaction. Leaders from the Board of
Directors have met with Bobby Fong, president of Butler University, and Daniel Elsener, the president
of Marian College. Both presidents expressed their support of the school‘s charter application and
foresaw specific ways in which HRCA could partner with their respective institutions. Mr. Elsener
suggested that Marian College would be interested in making several of its facilities available to the
school, such as the library and auditorium. Dr. Fong believes students from multiple Butler departments
could work with the school. He spoke of business majors assisting during the start-up phase; history
majors contributing in the classroom and with curriculum development; and fine arts majors working on
after-school programming. Dr. Fong has submitted a letter of support to the mayor‘s office and both
presidents have agreed to appoint representatives to the board of directors to cement the future
          Board Directors also met with leaders from Young Audiences of Indiana. Well known in the
community for bringing artists of diverse backgrounds into the classroom, Young Audiences is
particularly interested in working with HRCA to develop an integrated arts curriculum in which their
artists would play a central role. The director of Young Audiences‘ Arts Partners program has submitted a
letter to the mayor in support of HRCA‘s charter application and looks forward to this opportunity to be a
resource for arts programming and teacher professional development.

         The president of HRCA‘s Board of Directors met with the Eagle Branch manager from the
Indianapolis Marion County Public Library. She chose this branch because it is located in the
northwest region in which we intend to be located. Kate Smith, the branch manager, and her associate
John Ridge, a former longtime public school teacher, were enthusiastic about working closely with the
school. Some of the ideas they suggested were: developing a section of their library devoted to HRCA
student research; working with teachers to develop their curriculum plans; purchasing and requesting
additional resources to complement HRCA‘s curriculum; organizing workshops for students and teachers
on library use and research techniques. Kate Smith has written a letter to the mayor in support of HRCA‘s
charter application and is committed to developing a strong working relationship between her branch and
         Members of HRCA‘s Board of Directors met with Ieva Grundy, adolescent programs manager, at
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Ms. Grundy expressed a willingness to form a partnership
with HRCA. Specifically, we discussed the possibility of HRCA adapting several of the museum‘s youth
partnership programs, such as: Youth Toward Technology, Metropolitan Youth Orchestra, and the Junior
Scientech Club. Ms. Grundy referred us to Leslie Power, the new director of school services, with whom
we plan to meet.
         Board members met with Troy Smythe, manager of teacher and school services for the
Indianapolis Museum of Art. Mr. Smythe was attracted to HRCA‘s curriculum and saw numerous
opportunities for collaborative efforts. He spoke specifically about the possibility of involving HRCA
students and teachers in the full experience of exhibit research and design. He expressed IMA‘s
commitment to forming close, substantive partnerships with nearby schools, which he hoped would
include HRCA. He also asked that we schedule a meeting in the near future with him and the director of
the museum. He has enthusiastically written a letter in support of HRCA‘s charter.
         HRCA has also entered into discussions with the Indiana Academy of Music. Kathy
Hershberger, director of the violin program, has suggested numerous options for integrating performance
music into the school‘s curriculum and before-school programming. Ms. Hershberger will be teaching
music pedagogy at Butler University and discussed the opportunity for student field experience at HRCA.
         We have also had preliminary discussions with several neighborhood associations on the
northwest side. Working with Crooked Creek Community Council (representing nine neighborhood
associations on the northwest side) and the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association will provide
opportunities to promote the goals of HRCA and forge relationships between school and community.
         We also intend to work closely with the YMCAs and community centers located on the near
north/northwest side, seeking to form a particularly close relationship with the Martin Luther King
Community Center.
         We plan to form working relationships with the high schools HRCA‘s students will attend.
Specifically, we look forward to working with the arts faculty at Broad Ripple, Northwest and Arsenal
Tech High Schools. Some ideas for partnership include joint professional development opportunities,
sharing resources, high school student involvement in HRCA activities, and HRCA student visits to the
high school.
         Connecting with other area charter schools and classical schools in Indiana and throughout the
nation is important to the HRCA Board and preliminary efforts in these areas have already begun.
         We have developed an extremely strong and collaborative relationship with Charles A. Tindley
Accelerated High School. Marcus Robinson and Siri Lescher have submitted a letter of support. We
intend to join Tindley in reaching out to other charter schools to collaborate on marketing, fundraising
and professional development as well as to share information and resources.
         Trinity School, a South Bend classical school for grades seven through twelve, which has
received three U.S. Department of Education, prestigious Blue-Ribbon awards, is supportive of HRCA
and its principal has submitted a letter of support for the school‘s charter application. Trinity has offered
to serve as a professional development resource for the classical training of HRCA teachers. HRCA
leaders have met with the leadership of 21st Century School and looks forward to working collaboratively
with them on future projects. Additionally, the president of Board of Directors has been in contact with

classical charter schools nationwide to discuss the possibility of forming a classical charter school
association with positive results.

III.      Educational Services Provided
          A. Educational Philosophy
          The educational foundation of Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will address the unique
needs of middle school age students through instruction and culture. Those needs are well defined by the
Carnegie Foundation‘s national study which points out that during the years of early adolescents, children
are typically underestimated with regard to their ability to learn and reason. Hope Renaissance Classical
Academy will engage these students by providing a basic foundation of knowledge (Core Knowledge)
and building upon that foundation. Our philosophy of classical education is best defined as an education
based on a core curriculum of integrated subjects and the ambitious mastery of ‗basic‘ and higher critical
thinking skills. At HRCA, our classical approach is holistic in attending both to the business of education
and the nurturing of students. Our program will offer equality of opportunity for all of our students as
each pursues the same content rich curriculum within an environment that encourages critical and logical
thinking, formulating and expressing arguments, and articulating opinions clearly and persuasively.
Individual student needs will be met through layering of instruction and varying options for self-
expression and assessment.
          The instructional plan at HRCA is built upon four compatible strands of significant and
successful educational research:
                    Constructivist learning theory
                    Paideia teaching strategies
                    Skills acceleration
                    Integrated core curriculum
Constructivist learning theory:
          At Hope Renaissance Classical Academy, teachers and staff will promote learning for
understanding. How students perceive and process knowledge provides the basis for this understanding.
In the classical tradition, learners are not viewed simply as vessels into which information is poured;
rather it is believed that learners actively construct knowledge as they strive to make sense of the world.
Constructivist learning theory provides a solid foundation for the application of classical training. It is
based on several ideas that are central to a classical curriculum including the following:
           Learning is an active process – the learner must engage with the world
           People learn to learn as they learn: as they learn, they construct meaning and systems of
           The crucial action of constructing meaning is mental – hands-on experience is not
              sufficient. Learners must have activities that engage the mind. (reflective activity)
           Learning involves language – collective research argues forcefully that language and
              learning are inextricably entwined (Vygotsky)
           Learning is a social activity – learning is intensely related to other people; teachers, peers
              and family.
           Learning is contextual - we learn in relationship to what else we know. Learners build upon
              the structure of what they already know; therefore we must build upon prior knowledge.
           It takes time to learn – we must revisit ideas, play with ideas, build upon ideas
           Motivation is a key component- motivation is essential
         These eight concepts are vital to the implementation of classical training and will not only inform
instruction at HRCA, but will reinforce our mission of providing a rigorous academic curriculum within a
safe and exciting learning community.
Paideia teaching strategies: Paideia teaching strategies consist of didactic instruction, coaching, and
seminar techniques. These techniques are complimentary to the curriculum at HRCA and will be used by
teachers as they deliver interdisciplinary lessons. The goal of didactic instruction is to provide students

with a body of knowledge from which to build. Coaching focuses on producing a product/project based
upon the knowledge acquired. The goal of a coached project is to place students in a position to
manipulate and apply the knowledge in a context that is personally relevant. Seminar work, emphasizing
critical thinking and Socratic dialogue, then takes the student beyond practical application into a higher
order of thinking about the knowledge. Students engage in making connections from their own world
view to the viewpoints of others. Essential elements of a Paideia classroom include:
           Involvement and interaction by teachers, students and the community
           Cooperative learning
           Art of conversation
           Civil disagreements
           Students planning, designing, working, evaluating and producing
           High expectations for the students and teacher
          Teachers at HRCA will receive training in Paideia techniques through conferences and in-service
workshops. These techniques, in conjunction with caring learning environments and a challenging
academic program, will result in ―(a) the acquisition of organized knowledge, (b) the formation of habits
of skill in the use of language and mathematics, and (c) the growth of the mind‘s understanding of basic
ideas and issues,‖ promoting the school‘s mission of academic excellence (Roberts & Billings, 1999).

Skills acceleration: We realize that students who enroll at HRCA will possess a variety of skills and skill
levels. It will be critically important to address skill deficits immediately, in order to allow each student to
benefit fully from the HRCA curriculum. The issue of skills acceleration will be addressed in several
ways. One individualized instruction approach that has been identified and is being considered for reading
acceleration is HOSTS, a literacy program that promotes the practices recommended by the National
Reading Panel, The National Research Council, and the ESEA Legislation. HOSTS is a developmentally
appropriate, diagnostic and prescriptive program for Language Arts that includes specific instruction and
practice in phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and text comprehension. HOSTS is a
nationally validated Title 1 practice and is singled out as a model program in the ―No Child Left Behind‖
Act. HOSTS provides schools with LearnerLink, a computer-based system which assists teachers by
producing customized, aligned assessments which are then used to establish individualized prescriptive
lesson plans for groups or individuals in the classroom. The lessons are linked to school curriculum and
aligned with state standards. In addition, HOSTS has developed a Structured Mentoring Program, which
has proven highly successful at skills acceleration, as well as providing a means of connecting students
with community in a unique and effective way. The goal of both programs is to accelerate student
learning, in order that all children reach grade level as quickly as possible. Evaluations of HOSTS
programs are included in Appendix II.
         Skills acceleration will also be promoted through special blocks of time within the students‘
schedule devoted to strategies such as, tutoring, small group and one-on-one work, and individualized
self-directed instruction. Math acceleration will be addressed similarly, with assessments prescribing
individualized student needs, followed by intensive focus on eliminating those deficits.
         Students for whom English is a second language will benefit from individual and group
instruction with HRCA‘s bi-lingual/ESL teacher during specified language blocks. The HostsLink
program may also prove useful as a tool for individualizing computer-based English instruction. After
individualized assessments, HostsLink builds new language upon existing knowledge to provide a
stronger linguistic foundation. HRCA‘s strong curricular focus on Spanish language acquisition by
English speaking students will place a high value on Spanish language and cultures and bi-lingual
activities will frequently be incorporated into CPR. This emphasis and interdisciplinary process will
benefit both English and Spanish speaking students.
         Block scheduling and team teaching will also provide means for individualized assistance that
will directly benefit students below grade level.

Integrated Core Curriculum: The idea behind Core Knowledge is ― that for the sake of academic
excellence, greater fairness, and higher literacy, elementary and middle schools need a solid, specific,
shared core curriculum in order to help children establish strong foundations of knowledge, grade by
grade.‖ This idea is highly congruent with HRCA‘s classical approach and although we intend to
resequence the social studies content, the Core Knowledge foundation has assured us that they ―don't feel
that the integrity of the sequence will be jeopardized by your setting your program up this way.‖ Core
Knowledge provides a foundation based upon years of research into effective curricular content and
structure but allows for flexibility to meet state standards. The importance of sequence is to eliminate
repetition and gaps in knowledge and skills. The staff of HRCA will work carefully as a team to avoid
either of these pitfalls.
          E. D. Hirsch stated in a speech entitled, Why Core Knowledge Promotes Social Justice, that ―the
emphasis of schooling should fall on the academic curriculum‖ and that ―all children should share a core
of common intellectual capital. The most acute thinkers about democratic education, including Jefferson,
Horace Mann, and Du Bois, believed that it is not intelligence that increases knowledge but knowledge
that increases intelligence.‖ HRCA will emphasize the acquisition of knowledge and the ability to build
intelligence through an integrated core curriculum of basic and elaborated knowledge.
         The culture and environment at HRCA will be one of respect for others and enthusiasm for
learning. Teachers and staff, who will model these values toward students and each other, will reinforce
this culture. In order to develop these norms within HRCA, we will implement the following educational
                   Small learning communities
                   Responsive Classrooms: Circle of Power and Respect (CPR)

Small learning communities: HRCA‘s vision of a classical curriculum is enriched by the development of a
learning community that positively reinforces the participation and advancement of all members. The
concept of small, learning communities will be reinforced through small school size and small class size.
A 1997 study by the Hudson Institute asked parents why they had chosen a charter school over a
traditional public school. Fifty-three percent of those surveyed cited overall school size as their primary
reason. (Rotherman, Ed Week, 1999). School reform research stresses the importance of small schools,
particularly with regard to meeting the needs of students at risk for academic failure. For example, the
National Association of Secondary School Principals‘ published Breaking Ranks: Changing An American
Institution (1996), which stressed school size as an essential element of responsive and engaging schools.
         The Carnegie Foundation study, Turning Points, also recommends ―small communities for
learning‖ (1989). Additional research on school size points to the fact that small size is an essential
element for governance and organization within a school and sets the tone for learning and self-image.
Small schools encourage stable relationships between teachers and students and among students.
         Hope Renaissance Classical Academy will also reinforce the building of community through
small class size, which will be limited to approximately 20 students. All students, but particularly those
who are at risk of failure in traditional school environments, will benefit from classes and learning
environments that allow them to feel comfortable with the free exchange of ideas. Teachers at HRCA will
work together to facilitate a respectful and beneficial exchange. All staff at HRCA will participate as
learners within the community environment and, as understanding is built, students will assume
increasing responsibility for the development and achievements of that community.

Circle of Power and Respect (CPR) based on Responsive Classroom approach: Respect for and among
students and teachers, is a key element of HRCA‘s mission. Positive attitudes and mutual respect within
the school will translate to similar attitudes and contributions to community. This emphasis will be
supported through responsive classroom techniques including Circle of Power and Respect (CPR). CPR
involves a daily meeting at all grade levels that has four components. Students learn to greet each other
with respect; communicate with power and authority without putting each other down; listen to each
other‘s stories, hopes, and fears, and talk about the business of the day ahead. However, CPR goes further

than simply setting the stage for good learning. ―All of the components of CPR lend themselves to the
introduction or reinforcement of academic skills. Through Greeting, Sharing, Group Activity, and News
and Announcements, middle school students learn how to think critically, how to frame and ask good
questions, how to solve problems, how to work cooperatively, and how to turn their need for peer
connection into a positive and dynamic learning strategy. CPR makes sense for middle school students.‖
(Bechtel, NEFC) Research and practice demonstrate that CPR ―offers middle-school-age children
stability during a period in their lives dominated by tumultuous change. It also allows them to do what
they most want and need to do: connect with their peers. Students at this age long to be part of the group,
but they‘re often uncertain how to join together in a way that isn‘t mean and exclusive. CPR gives them a
way. Seated in the CPR circle, all students are seen and acknowledged.‖ (Bechtel, NEFC) HRCA views
CPR as a critical component of the educational philosophy that supports our mission.

         B. Academic Standards
         Academic standards describe the specific goals of curriculum and instruction, ―the destinations at
which students should arrive at the end of the unit or term.‖ At HRCA, content and performance
standards will be based upon several overlapping guides: Indiana Academic Standards, Core Knowledge
Content and school goals as specified above. In addition to traditional assessments such as ISTEP and the
Iowa Test of Basic Skills, students will accomplish alternative assessments developed to evaluate success
at HRCA and school success in meeting mission objectives. Rubrics will be devised for alternative
assessments with proficiency levels determined at one of four levels; advanced, proficient, novice, and
basic. All rubrics will describe what student work must consist of in order to meet criteria for a specified
         Appendix III contains a chart that provides examples of Indiana standards used as a foundation
upon which course content and assessment are determined at the eighth grade level. The first column
outlines the Indiana academic standards further detailed at The second
column provides the curricular framework of academic content for eighth grade. The third column lists
exit standards aligned with both curricular mission and state academic standards.
     Exit standard/requirement for graduation from grade 8 at HRCA include the following:

                               Internal and External Performance Evaluations:
    1. Receiving a passing grade each semester and meet yearlong project goals, including
    one project-related Exhibition of Mastery with an average or above score. (Evidence of meeting this
    standard will be documented in Progress Reports and Exhibition of Mastery Scoring Rubrics.)
    2. Achieve a passing grade each semester in all core curriculum areas: language
    arts, math, social studies, science and languages. (Evidence of meeting this standard will be
    documented in Progress Reports.)
    3. Achieve a passing score on ISTEP exams.
    4. Achieve a passing score on Latin exit exam (which will be based upon the number of years at
    Present a portfolio to a panel of judges. (Scoring rubrics must be attached to all student portfolio
    pieces. A minimum score of 80% must be attained for each piece and for the final presentation.)
     The Eighth Grade Portfolio must include these pieces of written work:
                     a) Letter of Reflection on Service Learning Project
                     b) Persuasive Essay
                     c) Poem
                     d) Scientific Writing
                     e) Essay on a Work of Literature
                     f) Creative Writing
                     g) Research Paper to accompany an Exhibition of Mastery
                     h) Student assessment of Exhibition of Mastery

                     i) Book list from grade 8
    It must also include:
     Resumé and High School course work plan
     Sample of Best Artistic Work from a Course or Project (including literary work, dance, music,
        theatre or visual arts)
     A Letter of Recommendation written by the student‘s Humanities teacher.
     Each student will be required to participate in a public speaking activity or a dramatic
                                         Science and Technology:
   Complete a Science Fair Project and Paper with a passing grade of 75% or higher for each year at
    HRCA. (Evidence of meeting this standard will be documented in Progress Reports and on Scoring
   Present the Science Fair Project as an Exhibition of Mastery receiving an average score or higher.
    (Evidence of meeting this standard will be documented on the Exhibition of Mastery Scoring
   Acquire Technology Competencies. (Evidence of meeting this requirement will be documented in a
    technology competency checklist).
                                           Community Service:
   A student must complete a service-learning project in each grade and write a reflection of that project.

    Promotion standards for each grade level will include successful completion of coursework,
exhibition of mastery projects, portfolio review, science fair project and success on standardized and other
objective tests. Additional standards for language arts will include those developed by National Council
of Teachers of English (Appendix IV). NCTE standards elaborate on Indiana standards by including
specific reference to ―developing an understanding and respect for diversity and language use, patterns,
dialects across cultures, ethnic groups, geographic regions and social roles.‖ NCTE also refers to the
importance of research using a wide range of technology.
    Latin promotion standards in grades 6 through 8 will be based on passage of the National Latin Exam
and successful completion of course work, Latin binder and Latin project.

         C. Curriculum
         Hope Renaissance Classical Academy has selected the Core Knowledge curriculum as the
framework for instruction, based upon its excellent academic standard and its emphasis upon rich content.
Additionally, the Core Knowledge curriculum is renowned for its close alignment with state and national
standards. The intent of HRCA is to deliver a curriculum, which is based upon an historical theme
complimentary to Core Knowledge curriculum. The sequence of the Core Knowledge topics will be
amended to suit the historical theme of the academy.
         For example, in the 5th grade students will be taught the beginnings of civilization and ancient
history. Much of the reading and language arts instruction will focus on myths and legends from various
world civilizations allowing students to compare and contrast those works and the themes that arise.
Math and science will be taught via a traditional curriculum through which historical themes will be
threaded. The social studies unit described above would, at some point, integrate math, allowing students
to study and create Erastoshenes‘ sieve to demonstrate a method for finding prime numbers. In science,
5th grade students studying astronomy would learn that, from the ancient Egyptians to the Greek
astronomer Hipparchus, and later to Ptolemy and others, there were ratios and methods developed to trace
the paths of the Moon, the planets and the stars.
         These kinds of connections help students to build a broad worldview and to understand the
breadth and depth of the knowledge that came before. It also develops an appreciation for other
individuals and cultures reinforcing the significance and beauty of diversity among peoples of the world.
         The following chart outlines the curricular framework at each grade level at HRCA:

Subject       Fifth Grade                             Sixth Grade

Language      I. Writing, Grammar and Usage           I. Writing, Grammar, and Usage
Art/English   II. Poetry                              II. Poetry
              III. Fiction (Stories; Myths and        III. Fiction and Drama
              Legends)                                IV. Sayings and Phrases
              IV. Sayings and Phrases                 V. Speeches and Historical Documents
              V. Speeches
History and   I.        World History/Geography       II.       World History/Geography
Geography     I. World Geography                       I. World Geography (Spatial Sense;
              II. Meso-American Civilizations         Deserts)
              III. Ancient Rome and the Byzantine     II. Europe in the Middle Ages
              Empire                                  IV. The Spread of Islam
              IV. Ancient Egypt and Africa            V. Medieval African Kingdoms and
              V. Russia: Early Growth and             Governments
              Expansion                               VI. China: Dynasties and Conquerors
              VI. Feudal Japan                        VI. Latin American Independence
              VII. Lasting Ideas from Ancient         Movements
              Civilizations (Judaism, Christianity;   VII. Vikings and Norsemen
              Greece and Rome)                        VIII. Feudal Japan
              VIII. The Mongols                       IX. Exploration, expansion and Forms
              American                                of Government
              I. Native Americans: Cultures and       American
              Conflicts                               I. Cultural Connections
              II. Westward Expansion                  II. Early History of United States
              III. Foundations of Government          III. Movements. Events and Historic
              IV. U.S. Geography                      Figures
              VI. Roles of Citizens                   IV. Populations and Resources
Visual Arts   I. Art of Ancient Rome                  I. Art of the Middle Ages
              II. American Art: Native American Art   II. Gothic Art
              III. Art of Japan                       III. Art of Africa
              IV. Byzantine Art.                      IV. The Art of China
                                                      V. Islamic Art and Architecture
Music         I. Elements of Music                    I. Elements of Music
              II. Listening and Understanding         II. Early Music and Composers
              (Composers; Connections)                III. Classical Music: From Baroque to
              III. American Musical Traditions        Romantic
              IV. Types of Instruments, Music and
Mathematics   I. Numbers and Number Sense             I. Numbers and Number Sense
              II. Ratio and Percent                   II. Ratio and Percent
              III. Fractions and Decimals             III. Computation
              IV. Computation                         IV. Measurement
              V. Measurement                          V. Geometry
              VI. Geometry                            VI. Probability and Statistics
              VII. Probability and Statistics         VII. Pre-Algebra
              VIII. Pre-Algebra

Science       I. Classifying Living Things             I. Plate Tectonics
              II. Cells: Structures and Processes      II. Oceans
              III. Plant Structures and Processes      III. Astronomy: Gravity, Stars, and
              IV. Life Cycles and Reproduction         Galaxies
              V. Human Body (Endocrine and             IV. Energy, Heat, and Energy Transfer
              Reproductive Systems)                    V. Human Body (Lymphatic an
              VI. Chemistry: Matter and Change         Immune Systems)
              VII. Science Biographies                 VI. Science Biographies
Latin         I. Introduction to ancient languages     I. Recognize and use derivatives in
                        • linguistic origins           speaking and writing
                        • origins of romance           II. Read Latin passages
                        languages                      III. Begin acquisition of verb
              II. Etymology of Latin and Greek         conjugations
              III. Latin reading strategies            IV. Collaborative translation work
                        • morphology, syntax and

              Seventh Grade                            Eighth Grade

Language      I. Writing, Grammar, and Usage           I. Writing, Grammar and Usage
Art/English   II. Poetry                               II. Poetry
              III. Fiction, Nonfiction, and Drama      III. Fiction, Nonfiction, and Drama
              IV. Foreign Phrases Commonly Used        IV. Foreign Phrases Commonly Used
              in English                               in English
              V. Autobiography
History and   III.      World History                  V.        World History/Geography
Geography      I. The Renaissance and Reformation      I. Russia: Early Growth and Expansion
              II. European Exploration, Trade, Clash   II. Latin American Independence
              of Cultures                              Movements
              III. The Enlightenment                   III. Spanish Conquerors
              IV. The French Revolution                IV. Decline of European Colonialism
                                                       V. Immigration, Industrialization and
History and   IV.     American                         Urbanization
Geography     I. Colonial America                      VI. Modern America
              II.The Revolution                        I. Politics and Political Powers
              III. Constitutional Government           II. Middle East and Oil Politics
              IV. Reformers, Symbols, Figures          III. The End of Apartheid
              V. Westward Expansion                    IV. Civics: The Constitution –
              VI. The Civil War                        Principles and Structure of American
                                                       V. Geography of Canada and Mexico
Visual Arts   I. Art History: Periods and Schools      I. Art History: Periods and Schools
              (Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo,           (Impressionism, Expressionism and
              Neoclassical, Romantic, Realism)         Abstraction, Photography; 20th-
                                                       Century Sculpture)
                                                       II. Architecture Since the Industrial

Music               I. Elements of Music                      I. Elements of Music
                    II. Classical Music                       II. Non-Western Music
                    III. American Musical Traditions          III. Classical Music: Nationalists and
                    (Blues and Jazz)                          Moderns (Sibelius, Bartok, Rodrigo,
                                                              Copland, Debussy, Stravinsky)
                                                              IV. Vocal Music (Opera; American
                                                              Musical Theater)
Mathematics         I. Pre-Algebra (Properties of the Real    I. Algebra (Properties of the Real
                    Numbers; Polynomial Arithmetic;           Numbers; Relations, Functions, and
                    Equivalent Equations and Inequalities;    Graphs; Linear Equations and
                    Integer Exponents)                        Functions; Arithmetic of Rational
                    II. Geometry (Three-Dimensional           Expression; Quadratic Equations and
                    Objects; Angle Pairs; Triangles;          Functions)
                    Measurement)                              II. Geometry (Analytic Geometry;
                    III. Probability and Statistics           Introduction to Trigonometry;
                                                              Triangles and Proofs)
Science             I. Atomic Structure                       I. Physics
                    II. Chemical Bonds and Reactions          II. Electricity and Magnetism
                    III. Cell Division and Genetics           III. Electromagnetic Radiation and
                    IV. History of the Earth and Life         Light
                    Forms                                     IV. Sound Waves
                    V. Evolution                              V. Chemistry of Food and Respiration
                    VI. Science Biographies                   VI. Science Biographies
Latin               I. Language and Reading                   I. Language and Reading
                         Vocabulary/derivatives                    Vocabulary/derivatives
                         • morphology                              • morphology
                         • syntax                                  • syntax
                         • semantics                               • semantics
                    II. Predict events in reading; produce    II. Predict events in reading; produce
                    structural translation; understand        structural translation; understand
                    culture                                   culture
                                                              III. Study of idioms and language

Specific Curricular Elements:
         Classical instruction at Hope Renaissance Classical Academy is designed as an integrated,
content rich, core curriculum (modified Core Knowledge Sequence) that supports, not only mastery of
basic skills, but a deeper understanding and broad development of skills that prepare students for future
citizenship and lifelong learning. This expanded mastery includes creative thinking and problem solving,
communication and teamwork. HRCA will provide not only the core elements of math, science, language
arts, and social studies, but will also integrate the study and practice of art, music, movement and
languages (both classical and modern).
Second Language Instruction: All students will daily study a language that is not their own. If they enter
HRCA with English as a new language, they will study English. If their first language is English, they
will study Spanish. HRCA‘s flexible block scheduling will enable opportunities for peer second language
coaching that will not only strengthen individual students‘ skills, but will demonstrate the value that is
placed upon dual language acquisition. Spanish study will be mapped upon Indiana Foreign Language
Standards (Appendix V)
Latin: Latin is fundamental to traditional classical study because it builds understanding and connections
between languages and cultures, but there are additional benefits that enhance its relevance for a
―contemporary‖ classical curriculum. Latin is proven to raise English vocabulary and reading scores on

standardized tests. In Virginia (considered a ―high-stakes testing‖ state), Latin has been added to a more
challenging curriculum in many elementary schools. It is worth quoting a Fairfax City school board
member who states; ―If we‘re trying to improve English skills, teaching Latin is an awfully effective,
proved method.‖ (Time, 2000) Thousands of urban school projects nationally, have adopted the study of
Latin and results and benefits are detailed in Appendix VI of this document. Latin at HRCA will not be
taught through traditional memorization and recitation, but through an interactive, oral curriculum
enlivened by cultural study and made relevant by the study of Spanish and English derivations. Latin is an
almost purely phonetic language making it useful in teaching reading and the understanding of root
words, aids students in deciphering unfamiliar English and Spanish vocabulary. During the1970s and
‗80s, government funded Latin classes in underperforming urban school districts demonstrated dramatic
results not only raising reading a vocabulary scores after only one year of study but also showing outsize
gains in math, history and geography. Funding cuts ended what had been a successful ―skills
acceleration‖ program. Latin study will be slower at the middle school level than in high schools, but it
will still be based on Indiana Latin Language Standards.
Service Learning: The Office Of Program Development within the Indiana Department of Education
defines service learning activities as a ―blend [of] community service and learning activities so that both
occur and are enriched by the other. Youth participating in service learning programs perform a needed
community service that builds, utilizes or provides a framework for academic and civic skills, abilities
and competencies. The services can be provided within school walls, or in the community, and would not
normally happen if the students were not doing them.‖ HRCA will require that all students participate in
service learning and will structure this learning based upon the best practices established by the Office of
Program Development. These criteria include: clearly defined student, structured opportunities for
thinking about their service learning experiences and for recording those thoughts; activities developed
through student initiative; the inclusion of diverse populations; and recognition of efforts as a vital
element in establishing a service ethic among youth.
          HRCA teachers, staff and community partners will meet the challenge of teaching a wide range of
students to a high level of achievement by supporting and strengthening teaching practice that attends to
diverse student needs while simultaneously providing challenging subject- matter standards. Teachers
will receive continuous opportunities for professional development and team planning. Classical
instruction with a core curriculum is congruent with multiple teaching strategies. HRCA‘s organizational
approach involving team teaching, block scheduling and ongoing assessment, will allow teachers
flexibility and support to devise lessons and assignments specific to individuals and classes. Additionally,
ongoing collaboration with Special Education and English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers will
enhance efforts to meet each student‘s academic needs. Therefore, we expect that HRCA students will not
only meet, but also often exceed, grade level standards in their educational pursuits.

Sample Lesson Plans:
                              The Depression Era (United States) Grade 8
      Integrated Lesson Plan with Multiple Standards, Differentiated Instruction and Multiple
LANGUAGE ARTS: Students will read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou in
connection with the social studies unit on The Depression Era. The book is a narrative autobiography,
which takes place chiefly in rural Missouri.
Instruction will include: KWHL (What we know, what we want to learn and finally what we have
learned), Viewing, Listening, Speaking, Visually Representation (whole class) Journaling (individual)
―Row Assignments‖, Share/Compare (small groups). The class will:
     Visit the art gallery used for art class and add interior shots from the teacher‘s guide**
     Discuss why/how the General Store would have been a pivotal location for the population**
     Vocabulary /Grammar unique to the era and rural African-Americans
     Read the story aloud (teacher and students all in turn)

       Revisit KWL chart (compare to those from Social Studies, Art and Music classes)
       Continue inter-disciplinary work on the timeline (determine any patters in achievements, events
        and resulting changes/adjustments in lifestyle or political shifts.)
     View video of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.
            o Each row has a viewing assignment.
                    1. How does Marguerite‘s Life parallel Maya Angelou‘s?
                    2. Describe Mrs. Flower‘s place in the community and her relationship with
                    3. What role does the General Store play in Marguerite‘s life and the community?
                    4. What are Marguerite‘s talents? How does your observation differ from
                        Marguerite‘s opinion of her talents?
Indiana Language Arts Standards Addressed:
Standard 1: Vocabulary and Concept Development
Standard 2: Reading Comprehension
Standard 3: Reading: Literary Response and Analysis
Standard 7: Analysis and Evaluation of Oral Media Communications

 **The Maya Angelou Language Arts Lesson is embedded in the Social Studies, Music and Art Lessons
that are detailed in Appendix VII.

                                       Egyptian Tomb Painting
Grade Level: 5

Subject(s): Arts/History/Language Arts

Duration: Four 45-minute sessions

Description: Students role play that they are a Pharaoh or Queen in Ancient Egypt. They design a tomb
mural using the canon of proportion, shallow picture plane, and horror vacui (fear of empty places)
depicted in tomb paintings. Using hieroglyphics, students write about the fantastic things that they
accomplished as a ruler of Egypt.

    1. Students will learn about daily life in Ancient Egypt.
    2. Students will be able to identify characteristics of Ancient Egyptian art.
Art Standards: Art Standard 1 – Students will understand the significance of visual art in relation to
historical, social, political, spiritual, environmental, technological and economic issues.
                  Art Standard 3 – Students describe, analyze and interpret works of art and artifacts.
                  Art Standard 6 – Students theorize about art and make informed judgments.
Language Art Standard: Standard 1 – Reading: Word Recognition, Fluency and Vocabulary
History Standards: World History Standard 2: Early Civilizations
    1. Students will be able to create a tomb mural using the canon of proportion, shallow picture plane,
         and horror vacui (fear of empty places).
    2. Students will be able to define vocabulary terms related to Egyptian history and art.

    examples of hieroglyphics
    Egyptian art examples from books and Internet (see sites below)

       drawing paper
       graphite pencils
       colored pencils
       Egyptian Art - PowerPoint Presentation
       Vocabulary Quiz

             1. pharaoh - King of Egypt (thought to be a god), means "Great house who shelters all his
             2. Book of the Dead - Contained about 200 spells. To help the dead on their journey to the
             3. ka - The invisible soul of a dead person that goes to the after-life. It is kept alive by grave
                 offerings from the living.
             4. hieroglyphics - Egyptian writing, made up of pictograms.
             5. cartouche - An oval or oblong frame encircling a ruler's name.
             6. tomb murals - Paintings of a person's life in his/her tomb.
             7. linear picture plane - All forms are in line with each other. No foreground or
             8. horror vacui - Fear of empty spaces (this is why Egyptian art is so crowded).
             9. hierarchical scale - The more important the figure, then the bigger they were depicted.
                 The Pharaoh and the Gods were always shown larger than anyone else.
         This lesson will be used as part of an Ancient Egyptian unit.
Provide an overview of Egyptian art using the PowerPoint presentation and referencing prior reading and
discussions. Have students reread or read new information that reinforces the lessons. Include discussion
of vocabulary words> Discuss the characteristics of Ancient Egyptian art and the use of hieroglyphics.
(Teachers may also want to show students some of the Internet sites listed below.)
         Have students pretend to be a Pharaoh or a Queen of Egypt. Students will first write their name in
hieroglyphics to become familiar with the alphabet. Then they will design a tomb mural depicting
themselves as the ruler (bigger than anyone else). They should use the canon of proportion, shallow
picture plane, and horror vacui (fear of empty places) in their tomb paintings. Students will outline the
forms in black pencil and then color them in with bright colors. Students can add hieroglyphics to tell
about what they accomplished as a ruler of Egypt. Students can also add a curse!

Assessment: Teachers will develop a rubric to assess various aspects of the hieroglyphic writing
assignment and use of canon. A quiz will be used to assess students' understanding of the vocabulary
         Special Needs Students: The visual focus of the lesson makes large concepts more accessible to
students with special needs and English as new language learners. These students may use the skills
building period and/or structured reading time for additional to read material for their projects. One of
their teachers (regular, ESL, or Special Ed) will provide additional coaching related to the material to help
the student focus in and think about key concepts, identify items/issues that could be included in project.
Useful Internet Resources:
• Hieroglyphic Symbols;
• Gateway to Ancient Egypt
• Egyptian Art 2700 BC - 200 AD

         D. Assessment
         HRCA‘s approach to assessment is to build an evaluative framework that accurately measures our
progress in both academic and non-academic ways. HRCA is interested not only in performance, but also
in ensuring that every member of our school community (including staff) challenges themselves to the full
extent of their capabilities. Thus, we view assessment not only as an essential means to evaluate student
progress, but also as a comprehensive vehicle for encouraging continuous improvement and success.
         Criterion-referenced assessments such as ISTEP+ will be used with end-of-course assessments at
HRCA to evaluate academic progress toward mastery of what students should know and be able to do.
Both ISTEP+ and HRCA‘s curricular framework are (or will be) aligned to the Indiana Academic
Standards. Test results will reflect the level of success achieved toward mastery of grade specific
knowledge. The National Latin Exam will be utilized at the end of each academic year as it directly
relates to the HRCA curriculum. Diagnostic tests such as HOSTS will be used to give teachers
information about student strengths and identify instructional needs so that instruction is adjusted
accordingly for each individual student. A norm-referenced test such as the North West Education
Educational Assessment (NWEA) will be used as a pre and post test annually to demonstrate student
progress both relative to the individual student (growth across the year) and compared to other schools.
         In addition to standardized testing and reporting, the interdisciplinary focus of the curriculum will
afford opportunities for performance and project work emphasizing not only mastery of standards, but
also particular skills and interests of individual students. Assessments will also be important for
determining stakeholder satisfaction, and evaluating the schools‘ success in creating a caring learning
environment. HRCA will develop methods of making such assessments.
Baseline Assessments - Skills Acceleration
         Baseline assessments will be administered at the beginning of each year in order to evaluate
student strengths and weaknesses. Results of these assessments will be used by teachers as they work
together to develop instructional strategies. The education director will assist with planning differentiated
instruction designed to meet student needs. We are reviewing the HOST program (and others) to select a
computer-based assessment design that is aligned with state standards and academic mission of HRCA.
Our goal is to immediately identify students who test below grade level, in order to diagnose needs and
offer individualized work plans to address areas for skills acceleration. Ongoing instruction and
assessments specific to basic skills will determine HRCA success at bringing students up to grade level
and beyond. Goals for students testing below grade level in math or reading will be:
   Students who test one grade level below current grade will test at or above grade level at the end of
    the academic year.
   Students who test more than one grade level below current grade will show an increase in skill level
    at the end of the first year and will perform at or above grade level at the end of their second year.
Baseline and Ongoing Assessments – Student Academic Progress
Baseline assessments
         In addition to technology-based assessments, teachers will devise assessments specific to their
subject areas and curricular goals that will enable them to determine prior knowledge and skills for
individual students. For example, the language arts teacher might give an initial reading assignment with
questions to be answered that are tiered to various levels of comprehension (Blooms Taxonomy,
Appendix VIII). From this exercise, the teacher will be able to determine the skill levels and prior
knowledge of students before beginning instruction and can develop the teaching strategies and
assessments required to make sure that objectives are met for all students. Instruction at HRCA will be
both layered and differentiated in order to accommodate a wide range of learning styles and student
abilities. Teachers will create well-defined scoring standards or rubrics in order to be able to demonstrate
students‘ proficiency. Because these assessments are not yet created, stating quantifiable goals at this time

is not possible. However, because these assessments will be used to guide instruction all students should
demonstrate growth on these assessments.

On-going Performance Assessments
         We are fully aware that even in a rigorous academic program, tests provide only one measure of
evaluating success and failure. At HRCA, multiple measures will provide concrete feedback that allow us
to evaluate what areas we need to change, what is working, and what is not. Students will receive
alternative forms of assessment consistent with HRCA‘s mission to teach critical thinking and persuasive
writing. The below performance assessments will be used both as course requisites (students must
complete each task in order to pass the course) and as instructional tools (diagnostic) for teachers. This is
reflective of HRCA‘s approach of holding high standards/expectations for student performance while
providing a supportive instructional environment that will enable students to perform at a high level.
Because the below assessments are related to course requirements, successful completion of the below
tasks is expected of all of HRCA‘s students. At a minimum, HRCA expects 90% of its students at each
grade level to complete these requirements successfully. In addition to testing, teachers will regularly use
assessments developed collaboratively that will include the following:
 Primary work included in portfolios will be assessed using rubrics matched to performance based
     standards and will be developed by teaching teams to reflect performance standards as well as the
     interdisciplinary aspects of the curriculum. Sample rubrics are included in Appendix IX. In addition,
     students will contribute to developing project goals in many areas. Portfolios will include project
     descriptions, reports, community service documentation, writing samples, notes, and other student
     work. Teacher notes and progress reports documenting student work may also be placed within a
 Student Writing Samples. These will include both formal reports and more imaginative pieces,
     including poetry, essays, and fiction based upon curricular requirements and performance standards.
 Self-Assessment. In consultation with a teacher, all students will be asked each quarter to honestly
     assess what they have done well, where they have succeeded or failed to challenge themselves, where
     they have or have not carried through on an assignment or task, and where need to improve.
         Student Exhibition of Mastery:
 Students will complete a cumulative research project based upon their work in Social
     Studies/Language Arts. This project will include a research topic and questions to be developed by
     the student with ongoing teacher assistance/oversight. Assessment will include student and teacher
     evaluation of performance objectives and work completed.
 In order to successfully complete a grade level at HRCA, students must meet the criteria for having
     passed their coursework and met the obligations on their pre-academic year contract, which includes
     expectations for attendance, participation, and service learning commitment.

Annual Assessment —Learning Community and Culture
    HRCA is committed to creating a safe and stimulating learning environment. Although this goal is
somewhat complex and involves a myriad of factors, we will continually look for meaningful and
significant methods of measuring success. Assessment tools such as the following will be fully developed
and evaluated by an Assessment Team in cooperation with the staff and Board of Directors. These
assessments will include, but not be limited to:
 An evaluation of specific classroom activities performed in September by a professional or group of
    professionals from outside the school - to be repeated at semester‘s end. Evaluator(s) will note
    specific behaviors that contribute or detract from the overall classroom culture as articulated in
    HRCA goals. Results of this study will be reported to staff and Education Committee of the Board of
    Directors who will work together to address concerns and recommendations.

   Students and families will be surveyed with regard to school culture and overall satisfaction twice
    a year. HRCA staff and Board of Directors will attempt to discern: if students feel safe at school;
    if the learning environment is a positive, caring, and motivational place for students and for staff;
    if parents and community members feel welcome within the school environment; if students are
    aware of the importance of a good education; if the school communicates well with parents about
    educational issues; and what importance parents place on education but most particularly the
    education that their children are receiving at HRCA.

   HRCA will record and evaluate not only school attendance, but also levels of parent and
    community attendance at school events.
        Results of surveys, reports and evaluations will go to the staff and Education Committee of the
Board of Directors who will work together to develop specific, quantifiable goals (growth over time on
the assessments) for the next academic year, and to establish plans for addressing concerns.

Overall School Performance
HRCA will evaluate its performance using multiple measures of student performance, staff and
stakeholder satisfaction:
 student assessments: skills acceleration, discipline diagnostics and performance assessments.
 school environment and culture assessments: observations, attitude surveys, student and parent
    In addition to the measures described above, the school will collect and analyze data related to the
 incidents related to school management
 stakeholder satisfaction – surveys, waiting lists, evaluation of parent/family involvement,
 evaluation of teachers‘ job satisfaction. The Assessment Team will interview students, parents and staff;
observe classroom and general school activities; review surveys from all school stakeholders; and
evaluate score results and other accountability data. The team will provide concrete suggestions for
positive changes and results will be made available to the Board of Directors and charter sponsor. Where
appropriate, the results will also be included in the annual performance report (school report card)
available to the public. HRCA will place an extremely high value on stakeholder satisfaction with all
aspects of the school. Surveys will not only provide solid feedback, but also give a variety of suggestions
for creative initiatives in new areas. In addition, the process of reaching out to parents and the greater
community will also help us to actively engage our families and friends. Surveys will be undertaken at
least once a year.

Overall School Performance — Academic Goals
 On average, 90% of students who enroll at HRCA with skills below grade level will demonstrate
   progress towards raising skills in reading and math and perform at grade level no later than the second
   year of enrollment.
 At a minimum, 90% of students who maintain enrollment will successfully complete course
   requirements with at 2.0 GPA or the equivalent in performance assessments.
 The majority of students enrolled at HRCA for three or more years will go on to AP courses in high
 HRCA pass-rates for non-mobile students on the ISTEP+ will increase by 10% of the previous year‘s
   pass-rates until the grade and subject level pass-rates meet or exceed the highest of the 12 regional
   middle school pass-rates. For a more detailed description, including approximate targets see table C
   in the Goals section – Academic Goals.

Dissemination of Results
        Communication with students and their families will take place on a monthly basis throughout the
school year, supplying reports on student progress, achievement, extra-curricular activities, and school

wide assessments. All assessment outcomes will be reported annually in terms of absolute scores for
within-year student gains and losses and year-to-year student gains and losses to the public on line, the
families of HRCA students and the school sponsor. HRCA will compile assessment results and publish a
School Report Card responding to the requirements of Public Law 221 and the No Child Left Behind
Legislation. Based upon the outcomes of the aforementioned assessments, HRCA will submit a school
improvement plan to the state in compliance with Public Law 221.

        E. Support for Learning
        Respect for and among students and teachers, is the key element of school culture at HRCA. This
shared respect will reinforce positive attitudes and behaviors throughout the school. School culture and
support for learning will be reinforced through initial behavior contracts, Circle of Power and Respect,
student dress code and a discipline policy strengthened by peer mediation and judicial review detailed in
Appendix X.

CPR: HRCA‘s emphasis on a safe environment and mutual respect will be supported through responsive
classroom techniques such as Circle of Power and Respect (CPR). This daily meeting at all grade levels
has four components and offers stability, the opportunity to connect with peers and the feeling of
belonging. CPR gives every child the chance to be seen, heard and acknowledged. ―Students learn to
greet each other with respect; communicate with power and authority without putting each other down;
listen to each other‘s stories, hopes, and fears; and talk about the business of the day ahead. Through
Greeting, Sharing, Group Activity, and News and Announcements, middle school students learn how to
think critically, how to frame and ask good questions, how to solve problems, how to work cooperatively,
and how to turn their need for peer connection into a positive and dynamic learning strategy. CPR makes
sense for middle school students.‖ (Lynn Bechtel, NEFC)
Student Dress Code: In order to reinforce the sense of community and level the playing field, all HRCA
students will wear casual uniforms such as polo shirts and shorts or trousers. This dress code will
reinforce serious attitudes toward education and eliminate the pressure that students often feel with regard
to dress. HRCA will assist families who require aid to purchase uniforms.
Performance Contracts: All students and parents will review and sign a contract at the beginning of the
year that articulates academic and behavioral expectations.

HRCA Disciplinary Policy and Procedure: Students will be expected at all times to respect themselves,
others and their environment. If students do not meet this expectation (during the school day or at any
school function), the following steps will be taken to help students positively influence behavior.
     First Level Intervention: Classroom disciplinary procedures will include: teacher redirection,
        logical consequences and/or peer mediation (another aspect of Responsive Classroom
        Development, see Appendix X).
     Second Level Intervention: If a problem behavior continues, or is not improved through the
        regular classroom procedures, the teacher, parents and student will meet to create a plan to
        address the problem behavior. This plan must be in writing, signed by all parties and include a
        timeline for re-evaluation.
     Third Level Intervention: If the first plan is not successful within the defined period, a second
        plan (with a shorter time period and more specific goals) will be created by the teacher, parents,
        and the Executive Director. Parents may invite anyone else they feel would be helpful to the
     Suspension: If these levels of intervention are not successful in changing a chronic behavior
        problem or if a child engages in behavior that is dangerous or seriously disruptive to the
        classroom environment, they may be suspended. In the event of suspension, parents will be
        contacted and asked to pick up their child as soon as possible. In order for a child to return to
        school, the parents must meet with the teacher and Executive director to address the behavior and
        make a plan for any restorative measures necessary and future plans to ameliorate the behavior.

Family/School Partnerships
         Family relationships are important for student success and the creation of community within
HRCA. Plans are underway to develop a family resource center. Through the family resource center we
intend to provide access to technology, special tutoring for students, family networking options and
classes for parents in English, Latin and/or other educational areas. Other ideas for family involvement
include a Great Books Club and other academic interest clubs such as science.
         We will also recruit parent volunteers to participate as mentors as leaders in marketing and
fundraising efforts.
         HRCA will have a parent representative on the board of directors. In addition, we hope to have
parent volunteers who will supervise structured reading, join in organizing games and activities for
recess, and assist with the arts. Classroom reporters will assist with the production of a school newspaper
that will keep parents informed about activities, interests and scheduled events.
         Extracurricular activities including chess club and school athletic activities will be enhanced
through family involvement. Family Nights will be held frequently and families will enjoy student
exhibits and performances. The agendas for Family Nights can vary based upon the activities and needs
of students, teachers and families.
         A minimum of three parent/teacher conferences will be held each school year in October, January
and May. These conferences will include student participation and when needed there will be ongoing
dialogue between family, student and staff at HRCA in order to assist children with specific issues or
         HRCA intends to measure parent satisfaction through various survey instruments and informal
methods, such as information gathered through parent-teacher conferences. An annual school report card
will be published by the Executive director in collaboration with the board of directors and distributed to
all families.

Community Partners
         HRCA is committed to building profound and meaningful relationships with its community
partners. As a small school, we plan to emphasize quality rather than quantity in our partnerships, looking
for partners who will become integral members of the HRCA community.

        For example, Butler University students may tutor Latin, contribute original research to the
development of specific history lesson plans, direct plays, and participate in community service projects.
Indiana Academy of Music members might provide group and individual music lessons before school or
during the school day. HRCA students might spend significant time at the Indianapolis Museum of Art
participating in the research and design for an upcoming major exhibit. Young Audiences might train
teachers in integrating arts in all areas of curriculum as well as schedule appropriate artists for specific
curriculum design.

        F. Special Student Populations
        The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA ‘97) establishes high expectations for
children with disabilities to achieve real educational results, strengthens the role of parents in educational
planning and decision-making on behalf of their children, and focuses the educational planning process
on promoting meaningful access to the general curriculum. IDEA ‘97 defines special education as a set of
services to support the needs of children with disabilities to succeed in general education classrooms.
Under the law, more federal dollars are directed to school districts and allows them greater flexibility to
meet the needs of children with disabilities. As a Local Educational Agency (LEA), Hope Renaissance
Classical Academy will receive funding to serve its children with special needs.
        Article 7 of Indiana‘s Special Education Rules is found in the Indiana Administrative Code, 511
IAC and is based on the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ‘97 and federal regulations. HRCA is
committed to following the rules of Article 7, ensuring that each student with a disability be provided

with a free and appropriate education and an equal opportunity to participate in activities and services
available to all other students including non academic and extra curricular activities. We are also
committed to ensuring that all students with special needs be educated in the least restrictive environment
with an Individualized Education Program (IEP) directed at enhancing the student‘s involvement and
progress in the general curriculum. HRCA will have a full time special education teacher to work with
student, family and staff to implement the IEP and related services which may include special therapy,
counseling and transportation. School/community partnership will be pursued when applicable to
facilitate additional special services.
         Based on assessments, observations or progress, school personnel or a student‘s parent(s) may
refer a student for an initial educational evaluation to determine if a student is eligible to receive special
education and related services and to determine continued eligibility. When a referral or request for
evaluation is made, school personnel will meet with the parent to discuss:
     why the school or parent believes the evaluation is necessary
     what information currently exists about the student and what additional information is needed
     what strategies have been tried with the student
     what the evaluation process will include and how long it will take
     how the parent can obtain a copy of the evaluation report
         HRCA will always provide the parent with notice of procedural safeguards and a list of resources
for assistance in understanding special education (as required by law). Evaluations will be conducted by
a team of qualified professionals using a variety of procedures designed to provide information in all
areas that may be related to a student‘s disability or suspected disability. If the parent disagrees with the
evaluation, he/she may ask for an independent evaluation. Re-evaluation will be scheduled at least every
36 months. If the parent consents to special education services at HRCA, the student will receive special
education services.
         Each student with special needs will have an IEP in effect at the beginning of each school year.
The IEP will contain the following:
     Student‘s present level of educational performance;
     Measurable annual goals including benchmarks or short term objectives;
     Special education, related services, supplementary aids and services, and program modifications
         and supports to be provided to the student;
     Student‘s participation in state-wide or district-wide assessments including any necessary
         accommodations and the alternative assessment to be used if the student does not participate;
     When services will start and stop as well as the length, frequency and location of services;
     Explanation of any situation in which the student will not participate with non disabled students
         in educational, non academic and extra curricular activities;
     How the student‘s progress will be measured and how the parent will be notified of the progress;
     Whether the student needs extended school year services;
     Transition services the student needs; and
     Additional services or devices necessary to provide a free and appropriate public education.

         HRCA will develop a Case Conference Committee (CCC) that will include:
      a representative from the school (other than the student‘s teacher) who is qualified to provide or
          supervise the provision of specially designed instruction and knowledgeable about the general
          education curriculum and the availability of the school‘s resources
      the student‘s primary teacher
      one of the student‘s general education teachers
      the parent or parents
      and possibly other individuals depending on the purpose of the CCC
         The CCC will review and revise the student‘s IEP Parent(s) or the school may invite others to
attend if the individual has special knowledge or expertise about the student. Although the CCC may be

comprised of many individuals, the parent and the school‘s representative will be key participants and
responsible for making decisions.
         Our Special Education teacher will assess all students with previous special needs histories and
each student‘s progress will be monitored after an IEP is developed with the help of parents and other
teachers. Regular meetings will occur to assess if and when any changes in the IEP need to occur.
         The Special Education teacher at HRCA will be responsible for:
      Participating in the student‘s CCC meeting to assist in developing the IEP
      Providing direct or indirect services to the student according to the IEP
      Monitoring implementation and providing progress reports to parents
      Making the IEP available to teachers and others who implement the IEP
      Advising each teacher and service provider of his or her service responsibilities in implementing
         the IEP
      Ensuring that supplementary aids and services and modifications and supports are provided as
         required in the IE;
      Serving as consultant and resource person to those who serve the student
      Ensuring that accommodations on state and district wide assessments are implemented in
         accordance with the IEP
      Participating in the on-going or three-year re-evaluations of the student.
         A student may also qualify for Special Education Services under Section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act. If a student does qualify, HRCA will provide general or special education and related
aids and services designed to meet the student‘s individual educational needs. In addition to the Special
Education teacher, HRCA will participate in the special education cooperative created under the auspices
of Ball State University and available to all charter schools in the state. This partnership will ensure that
no student falls through the cracks and that specialized services beyond the scope of HRCA can be
adequately provided and supported. The cooperative will provide direct services or make appropriate
referrals. In the event that HRCA enrolls a student with exceptionally high needs, it may become
necessary to hire additional staff to accommodate that student in way that complies with legislative
guidelines and is aligned with the mission of the school.
         HRCA‘s philosophy is to provide special needs students with the full range of adjunct services
and instruction they may require, while making every effort to integrate them into the school so that they
do not form a separate group apart from the general student population. This includes implementing
strategies to actively include them in all programs and activities at which they feel at ease and supported.
In fact, we intend that most special needs students will not be viewed as ―different‖ by the general student
body, but that all students understand the each individual is unique and valued. We feel strongly that
providing this degree of support and inclusion will allow the school as whole to not see our special needs
population as having problems that need to be addressed, but as individual who contribute to the greater
school community.
         The HRCA curriculum must be equally understandable by and accessible to all students in order
to be successful, including students for whom English is a new language. Until the makeup of our
enrollment becomes clearer, we do not know the number of students who will be in need of ESL/ENL
instruction or tutoring, and the extent of the help we will need to provide. We are absolutely clear that
providing this assistance and instruction is a priority, especially as we intend a concerted outreach to
Hispanic and other communities where language may be a factor.
         We intend to hire a Spanish teacher who is bi-lingual and has ESL experience. ESL students will
receive daily instruction in English as English-speaking students receive daily instruction in Spanish. At
times, these language classes will be combined to benefit all students. ESL students will be encouraged to
take advantage of computer-based individualized language instruction. HRCA will recruit parents and
community members to serve as educational aides to augment this instruction and provide a mechanism
for greater practice in language and writing skills.
         Finally, we view students from other cultures as a key teaching resource. We will continually
encourage them to share their experiences, world-views, and culture, and designate specific occasions

when this can take place in addition to regular class time. We will do everything possible to make all
children feel important, not only as students, but as teachers for the entire school.

         G. School Characteristics
         To meet the challenges faced by working families as well as the academically rigorous
curriculum of HRCA, the school day will begin at 8:45 a.m. and will end at 5:00 p.m., with supervision
available prior to the beginning and at the end of the school day. It has become typical within middle
school environments, to limit time for lunch to 20 minutes a day, with no conversation allowed. In
addition, it is common for students to spend most or all of the day in class, with little opportunity to
expend energy or participate in outdoor activities. At HRCA, we will allow students to converse while
they eat, eat in a leisurely way and spend the remainder of their 45-minute lunch periods involved in
organized games or social interaction. This time, combined with two other planned breaks in the daily
schedule will allow students to build community, focus on activities of interest and retain focus during the
more intense academic periods of their day.
         The school day will begin with the Circle of Power and Respect (CPR) that will build
relationships and foster a safe environment for students. Following this meeting, students will meet in
blocks that can last from 45 minutes to three hours. Each teacher will have a full lunch period and two
preparation periods per day, consistent with the schools mission of interdisciplinary courses.
         Children will attend school a minimum of 185 days per year, beginning the Tuesday after Labor
Day and ending in mid-June. Official holidays and vacations will mirror the Indianapolis Public School
          Specific aspects of the school schedule include:
     The school day is from 8:45 to 5:00.
     Periods 3, 6, & 9 are split: for grades 5 and 6 the first half is unstructured reading or lunch and the
         second half is recess. For Grades 7 and 8 the reverse is true.
     Supervision of recess and silent reading will rotate and be augmented by the Executive director
         and the Aide
     Thirteen teachers are needed; humanities, math and science teachers will teach for 6 hours per
         day. He/she therefore needs a full lunch period and 2 full preparation periods per day.
     The day will be broken into periods and blocks to accommodate grade levels and subject matter.
         For example, the morning for class 5A after CPR (Circle of Power and Respect) will be a
         humanities block with history as the focus and language arts integrated. Teachers will have the
         flexibility with this type of scheduling to rearrange and direct the study.
     Because the day is long, there will be time available for snacks, depending upon the lunch
     Morning and afternoon breaks will provide flexibility and relaxation for students and teachers and
         will allows for trips to a public library or park without disrupting other classes.
     Arts and music will rotate to be integrated into humanities study as needed and study periods
         allow for flexibility with regard to specific student needs and/or additional time for arts study,
         individualized instruction, etc.

Schedule Framework 2004-05:

                 5          5          5           6          6          6          7           7          7

   8:45       CPR        CPR        CPR         CPR        CPR        CPR         CPR        CPR        CPR

 9:15-    English/      math/       Latin   English/      math/       Latin   English/      math/       Latin
 10:45     history    science                history    science                history    science
                                 Spanish                           Spanish                           Spanish

  Vary       read/       read/      read/      read/       read/      read/      read/       read       read/
               out         out        out        out         out        out        out        out         out
 11:00         art/   English/      math/        art/   English/      math/      Latin   English/       math/
            study/     history    science     study/     history    science               history     science
            music                             music                           Spanish

 Noon       lunch/      lunch/     lunch/     lunch/      lunch/     lunch/     lunch/      lunch/     lunch/
 /1:00     outside     outside    outside    outside     outside    outside    outside     outside    outside
  1:30       math/      Latin        art/      math/      Latin        art/      math/       Latin       art/
           science                 study     science                 study     science                 study
                      Spanish      music                Spanish      music                Spanish      music

  Vary       break      break      break       break      break       break      break      break       break

  3:00-      Latin        art/   English/      Latin        art/   English/       art/        art/   English/
   4:45                 study     history                 study     history     study       study     history
          Spanish       music               Spanish       music                 music       music

14 total teachers including: 2 Spanish; 2 Latin; 1 art; 1 music; 1 ESL/skills acceleration; 1 aide; 1 Special

A Day in the Life of a Typical Student at Hope Renaissance Classical Academy:
         It is 8:30 in the morning and Paul is anxious for school to begin. He has arrived early and has
time to play a quick game of chess with his friend Carlos. Both boys are in the 7th grade at Hope
Renaissance Classical Academy. Paul is having a problem concentrating on the game because his mind
keeps wandering to the contents of his backpack. He brought to school a small blue bear and he is anxious
to share it with his class. Even though he is 12 years old, Paul is not embarrassed to share his love for this
bear and how he came to own it. In Circle of Power and Respect, the students have spent much of the last
week discussing their attachments to ―comforting‖ possessions. Alice, who brought a special blanket to
school in anticipation of a sleepover, initiated the topic. The group became very engaged in discussing the
details of this blanket and asked questions like: ―What was the original color?‖ ―How long have you had
it?‖ and so on. [This class of 7th graders, through regular participation in CPR, had been building trust and
developing the skill of empathy. They set aside their cool, aloof adolescent attitudes to respond with
respect and interest when Alice talked about the blanket.] Paul had been given his bear at the hospital
after a car accident resulting in a traumatic brain injury. He feels a strong attachment to the bear and is
eager to tell his story. His classmates are quite interested in his hospital experience and an animated
discussion about doctors, nurses and ―fear of hospitals‖ ensues. [The unintended consequences of this
dialogue include a deeper understanding for all students as to why Paul experiences difficulty with certain
aspects of his academic work.]

         The teacher directs the meeting into a discussion of the day‘s work ahead and Paul‘s attention
turns to his daily plan. Paul‘s first block of the day is language and he anticipates spending part of the
morning working on Latin vocabulary, translation and creating a Latin word-search puzzle. In Spanish,
Paul‘s teacher has the class writing skits (in-groups), which would be acted out and interpreted by the
other groups. Paul, who has been dealing with dysgraphia since his accident, is able to verbalize many
ideas while other students do the writing. He will exercise memory skill (another deficit) by learning his
lines, which will also reinforce Spanish vocabulary. After Spanish, Paul reads silently, using the time
wisely to catch up on some of his social studies work. Paul enjoys unstructured reading time because he
makes his own choices and works at his own pace. After reading, Paul heads for the playground for a
supervised soccer game
         After break, Paul has science, which is his favorite subject. His class is studying the island of
Japan and its topography. The science teacher shows all of the students a great topographical map and
they examine the island of Japan, discussing its propensity for earthquakes. The teacher presents photos to
illustrate their lesson and Paul likes the visual representations as they make it easier for him to remember
the information presented. Paul has a serious interest in geology and is anxious to learn all about the
"mechanics" of an earthquake. The "KWL" chart that he has designed, helps him to stay organized as he
begins work on the assigned project. (Appendix XI)
         After lunch and more soccer, Paul has math and the study of earthquakes continues. Paul learns
how to plot the rate of the earthquake from its epicenter. Using the information from the Richter scale he
and his classmates work together on an early warning system that can be used to save lives - a prototype
system that they will share with the city council of their sister city in Japan. Paul goes to the computer lab
after science to work on his math skills. He has an individualized program that has really helped him
catch up in math.
         The end of the day is Paul‘s humanities block and here the study of Japan continues. He joins his
group as they work on their timeline, noting important events in Japan‘s political history and connecting
those events to cultural developments. When the teacher notes that they have completed the assignment,
Paul shares his favorite Japanese myth and begins a written analysis of the story. This writing assignment
involves a brief description of the myth, an assessment of the type of myth and comparisons with myths
from other cultures. Some of these components require additional research, but eventually Paul has
recorded most of the information in his reading notebook. After completing his draft, Paul becomes
engrossed in-group study of Haiku production. His class is assembling a viewfinder, determining
perspectives and creating Haikus on scrolls. Each child has a specific task, and Paul is happy that he is not
the recorder but the researcher on this project. The project is very exciting and when complete, there will
be time to evaluate and discuss the many elements involved. Next month, it will be shared with parents
during at Family Night. Paul enjoys the soft Japanese music that the teacher plays while they work and is
surprised when it is time to clean up and go home. It has been a productive day.

IV.      Organizational Viability and Effectiveness
         A1. Enrollment
         Small class sizes are central to HRCA‘s academic mission as is having an overall school size that
facilitates the development of a strong sense of community among teachers, students and their families.
         The Carnegie Foundation report ―Great Transitions: Preparing Adolescents for a New Century‖
recommends that middle-school age students be taught in smaller units in order to foster stable
relationships between teachers and students and among students, ―smaller class sizes can ensure that each
student is well-known and respected.‖ The Coalition for Essential Schools recommends four essential
elements for effective school design: courses and curriculum designed to require serious intellectual
work; a student-teacher ratio not to exceed 20:1; an environment in which teachers have authority over
their work and time to collaborate; and family and community involvement.
         For these reasons, HRCA has determined the following growth pattern would be most appropriate
over the initial term of its charter:

Year 1:     Grades 5, 6, & 7- three classes of 20 students each;         Total of 180
Year 2:     Add three classes of 20 students each for Grade 8:           Total of 240 students
Year 3 - 5: Sustain capacity enrollment at 240 students

          HRCA is committed to upholding the Indiana Charter Law, which prohibits discrimination on the
basis of disability, race, creed, color, gender, national origin, religion, ancestry or need for special
education services. In compliance with the standing desegregation order, a goal of a minimum of 15%
African-American student enrollment will be aggressively pursued. We are passionately committed not
just to the word of the law but to its spirit. We believe HRCA offers an important option for all students
and that it is our responsibility to inform and educate the extended public about the school‘s mission,
philosophy, curriculum and desired outcomes.
          To meet this commitment, HRCA has developed a marketing strategy that focuses on broad-
based recruitment. We will also develop all promotional materials in English and Spanish as well as make
every effort to reach other populations with limited English fluency. Our overall recruitment goal is to
recruit a student body that is broadly reflective of Near North/Northwest Indianapolis.
          As we anticipate that demand will exceed enrollment capacity, HRCA will adopt a non-
discrimination enrollment policy. The Board of Directors, in cooperation with the Mayor‘s Office, will
develop procedures for a lottery. The lottery will be administered by a CPA in a manner that assures
fairness for all students.
          Informing families about HRCA and reaching families traditionally less informed about such
options drive HRCA‘s proactive marketing plan. Appropriate budget figures have been allocated for the
implementation of the plan. The board of directors has already begun the implementation of the plan and
will continue throughout the charter review process and up to enrollment deadlines.
          With Butler University as an active partner, we intend to build upon Butler‘s Center for
Citizenship and Community‘s existing strong relationships with many organizations and individuals on
the near north/northwest area of Indianapolis. The Center for Citizenship and Community, founded in
1996 at Butler University, is the university's locus for relationships with various community constituents
including neighborhood associations, community development organizations and social service agencies.
The Center coordinates service learning (academic learning linked to relevant community service) and
internship opportunities for students with community-based constituents. In particular, we will work
through the Center‘s established contacts with Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Center, Kaleidoscope,
Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association, Meridian-Kessler Neighborhood Association and Rocky
Ripple Neighborhood Association. Representatives from each of these group as well as many other local
organizations and churches, sit on the Center‘s advisory board.
          Many facets of the following marketing plan have already been put into motion, but it will be
fully and aggressively implemented upon receipt of a charter.

                                            HRCA Marketing Plan

To inform Indianapolis families from a broad base of socioeconomic, cultural and ethnic
backgrounds about the mission, philosophy, curriculum and desired outcomes of Hope Renaissance
Classical Academy

Target Audiences:
Primary: All families living on the near north/northwest side of Indianapolis.
Additional: All families living in Indianapolis, potential community partners, potential board members,
local corporations and foundations, media
Desired Outcomes:

Successful outreach to diverse populations; successful attainment of recruitment goals; corporate and
foundation support of HRCA‘s mission; development of strong community partnerships; positive media
    1. Work through the diverse and numerous contacts and affiliations of HRCA‘s board of directors
        and advisory board to schedule meetings and presentations about the school.
    2. Meet with the leadership of key community centers and churches in the near north/northwest side
        of Indianapolis to create opportunities to communicate with diverse audiences.
    3. Produce communication materials in English and Spanish that explain HRCA‘s mission in an
        accessible manner. Post brochures and posters at numerous locations in the near north/northwest
        side, in particular at service and community centers, YMCAs, churches, libraries and small
    4. Work with Rita Beatriz Cano, Family Development Coordinator, El Puente Project at the
        Hispanic Education Center, to reach out to Hispanic families living throughout Indianapolis.
        Organize small group presentations and meetings, meet one-on-one with as many potential
        families as possible
    5. Work with Barato Britt, Executive Director of the Indiana Chapter of the Black Alliance for
        Educational Options, a non-profit organization that also seeks to stimulate community interest on
        education reform issues, with a specific focus on the African-American community. Organize
        small group presentations and meetings, meet one-on-one with as many potential families as
    6. Make formal presentations and distribute at the Center for Citizenship and Community advisory
        board and area neighborhood associations during the fall and spring of each year.
    7. Advertise HRCA in English and Spanish in area neighborhood newsletters, The Indianapolis
        Recorder, Le Voz and Indy’s Child
    8. Develop and publicize an HRCA web site that informs viewers about the school as well as about
        the charter school philosophy.
    9. Distribute news releases to media outlets and community calendars about all public and
        neighborhood meetings; actively see opportunities for media interviews in print, radio and
        broadcast media focusing extensively on opportunities to reach diverse audiences.
    10. Assume a leadership role in collaborating with other area charter schools to communicate with
        area families about charter schools. Possible ideas include organizing a series of town hall
        meetings at which each school is invited to make a brief presentation and distribute materials as
        well to answer questions from families, and pooling resources to purchase advertising and to rent
        booths at such annual community events as Indiana Black Expo and the Hispanic Festival.

         A2. Demand
         Quantifying demand for a proposed school presents obvious challenges. However, we
believe that in the areas where we propose to locate HRCA demand has been loudly expressed and
exhibited by parents. We are confident that HRCA fills a crucial niche within the Indianapolis
community. Long waiting lists for each grade at IPS middle school magnet schools is one of the strongest
indicators of demand from area parents for educational options for their middle school age children. This
year, even with several charter schools having opened, there are over 100 children on the waiting list for
the sixth grades and closer to 200 on the waiting list for the seventh and eighth grades in these schools.
We believe HRCA will present not just a viable option for these families but an option to which they will
be strongly attracted because of the school‘s mission of preparing students for academic success during
and beyond high school.
         We believe ISTEP performance at high schools located in the near north/northwest area also
further establish the need for a middle school committed to cultivating students‘ academic potential. In
2001 at Broad Ripple High School, 36% of 10th graders passed the English/Language Arts section of the
ISTEP scores and 31% passed the math section. In 2001 at Northwest High School, 43% of the 10th

graders passed the English/Language Arts and Math sections. Both high schools‘10th graders performed
below the state average.
        During the past 18 months HRCA‘s board of directors has met with dozens of community,
corporate and educational leaders about the school‘s mission and the community need and demand. We
have repeatedly received passionate and positive responses from teachers, to university presidents to
parents. Our discussions with Barato Britt (Executive Director of the Indiana Chapter of the Black
Alliance for Educational Options), Rita Beatriz Cano (Family Development Coordinator, El Puente
Project at the Hispanic Education Center), Sister Theresa Boland (principle of Holy Angels Academy),
Marsha Colemen and Joanna Franklin (Crooked Creek Community Council), Mary Darling (Butler-
Tarkington Neighborhood Association) and many others have confirmed to us that HRCA will respond to
a prescient need and receive tremendous community support in successfully meeting its enrollment goals
and fulfilling its mission.

         B. Human Resources
         The HRCA Board of Directors is keenly aware that recruiting a talented and committed faculty
and staff is central to successfully achieving the school‘s goals. We are also aware that HRCA‘s unique
curricular content calls for distinct qualifications. We have developed the following strategies and
guidelines to respond to these issues.
         HRCA‘s teachers will reflect and embody the school‘s mission. They will be intellectually
inquisitive, not just about their primary subject but also about the threads that connect all disciplines.
They will find HRCA‘s curriculum liberating because it encourages them to be interdisciplinary and
creative and allows them to be autonomous. They will enjoy working independently but also benefit from
being part of a community of engaged colleagues.
         The block scheduling that forms the structure of the HRCA school day directly benefits teachers‘
needs to work collaboratively and to have ample time for planning. Teachers will teach four blocks a day
and have two 45-minute blocks of time set aside for planning and collaboration. Teachers and a teacher‘s
aide will rotate responsibilities for supervision of lunch periods and study time.

A day in the life of a teacher at Hope Renaissance Classical Academy
         The teacher arrives at school at 8:15 and after organizing for her day, she begins Circle of Power
and Respect. The meeting runs well, because the students understand the structure and expectations of
the meeting. This group of 5th graders remains with her for their humanities block after CPR. The lesson
is well prepared because she has had plenty of time to plan and differentiate the instruction for individual
student needs. The music teacher joins her this morning for because the lesson incorporates music
understanding and appreciation. After class, she has a 45-minute planning session with the art teacher.
She prepares for her next group of 5th grade students and after her lunch hour, she supervises a group of
children in the library (sometimes supervision is outside and sometimes she tutors individual students).
She has more planning time in the afternoon and teaches a third block of 5th grade students at the end of
the day. Planning sessions often involve the other 5th grade teachers in order for lessons to be well
integrated with other subjects. In all her day has included six instructional hours, three classes, one and a
half hours of planning and supervisory responsibilities.

         Professional development is crucial for HRCA teachers, who will face distinct challenges as they
implement this unique curriculum. We have allocated sufficient funds for each teacher to attend Trinity
Schools‘ annual August conference in South Bend (to which Advisory Board member Kerry Kohler has
invited our teachers to attend at no charge). The Coalition for Essential Schools at IUPUI has also agreed
to assist with professional development. We will rotate teachers‘ attendance at the annual Paideia
Conference. Dr. Stephens will develop in-service opportunities for teachers, particularly in the area of
standards, assessment and integration of curriculum. In a spirit of collaboration with other charter schools,
we will also work to organize in-service and conference opportunities in which other local charter school
teachers and staff might participate.

          HRCA believes that recruitment will best be accomplished through extensive networking efforts.
Dina Stephens, who has been identified as HRCA‘s executive director, through prior teaching at Ball
State University, (Transition to Teaching program) has identified several potential teachers who bring
professional maturity to their new careers. Marian College, who we have identified as a community
partner, also has a teacher transition program that targets students who have obtained liberal arts degrees
and are now interested in becoming certified. These students‘ liberal arts backgrounds would be ideally
suited to the challenges and opportunities of HRCA‘s curriculum.
          Since we believe teachers with professional or teaching experience would be most comfortable
with HRCA‘s progressive curriculum and culture, we also intend on networking with and recruiting
teachers from local and statewide parochial and private schools. Our current salary structure is extremely
competitive with the majority of these schools and competitive with early-career public school teacher
          Initial conversations indicate that the classics departments at regional colleges and universities,
such as Butler University and Indiana University, are good targets for recruiting candidates to teach Latin.
We also plan to network with area principals to recruit in this subject area. Based on a review of local
schools that offer Latin in their curriculum we feel confident that we will be successful in this effort.
Currently, the following schools in the Indianapolis area offer at least four and, in some instances, five
years of Latin in their curriculum: North Central High School, Lawrence North High School, Lawrence
Central High School, Carmel High School, Hamilton Southeastern High School, Warren High School,
Ben Davis High School, Decatur Central High School, Park Tudor, Cathedral High School, The Oaks
Academy and St. Richard‘s School.
          In the first year of operation, HRCA will hire 13 teachers, one half-time aide and a special
education teacher (whose specific qualifications and responsibilities are outlined in the section on special
student populations).
          Administrative support to the school will be provided by the executive director and business
manager. Job descriptions for each of these positions are included in Appendix XII.
          Provisions have also been made in the budget for janitorial services, although we anticipate
contracting this service rather than hiring a full time janitor.
          A benefits and compensation package designed and provided by Helicon and Associates will be
offered to each teacher and staff member. The specifics of that package include comprehensive medial
and hospitalization insurance, short-term and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, access to a
401k or 403b program and retirement credit in the Indiana Teachers Retirement Fund.
          The executive director will conduct staff and teacher evaluations annually. All staff and teachers
will be given standard cost of living increases with merit increases drawn from a 4% pool established in
each year‘s budget. Yearly contracts will outline expectations and goals for each teacher and staff
member. After their first year, teachers and staff members will participate in setting their performance
goals. Merit increases will be given based on the individual‘s accomplishment of these goals.
          Ultimately, of course, we believe teachers and staff members will come to HRCA not because of
the salaries but because of the culture of continuous learning and their commitment to the students we
serve. Committed teachers and staff members will thrive as they experience the rewards of assisting
students to reach their academic potential and of autonomous intellectual development and camaraderie
with the school team.

C.       Governance and Management
         HRCA will be governed by a Board of Directors to whom the executive director will report. The
Board will be organized under the By-laws, and Articles of Incorporation included in Appendix XIII.
         The Board‘s executive committee, comprised of the president, vice president and treasurer, will
all work closely with the executive director as consultants on major operational issues. Board committees
will be formed in the areas of finance (chaired by the Board treasurer), marketing and development. The
Board may create one or more committees by resolution of the Board and adoption by a majority of the
directors. These committees will have the authority of the Board in the management of the Corporation to

the extent provided in the resolution that leads to their formal establishment. Committees will be subject
to the direction and control of the Board except as provided by Indiana Statute.

                                           HRCA’s Organizational Chart

                  As sess ment Team                    Bo ard o f Directo rs
           (Facu lty,Bo ard, Ad ministratio n)

                                                      Dina Step hens , Ph D
                                                      Executive D irector

                                                 Faculty            Bu siness Man ag er

                                                      Helicon As s ociates     Co ntracted Services

          Specific Board responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:
1.    Own, lease, manage or otherwise handle real and personal property of the Corporation;
2.    Be knowledgeable of the operations of the Corporation;
3.    Establish the policies, goals and philosophy of the Corporation;
4.    Undertake fund raising efforts;
5.    Evaluate the various functions of the Corporation‘s operations;
6.    Be responsible for the preparation and approval of the annual budget, appropriate financial statements
      and monitor finances;
7.    Review proposed changes in operations;
8.    Work with Helicon Associates to produce quarterly and annual audit and audit reports;
9.    Develop and implement personnel, grievance and fiscal policies and procedures;
10.   Define the roles and responsibilities of individual Board members;
11.   Select and evaluate the executive director

         The Board will meet monthly and may have additional special meetings as needed. At meetings,
staff members and committee chairs will present reports concerning the school‘s operation and strategic
planning. As a part of their professional development, Board members will be informed of the latest
research and trends that affect the school‘s mission. Provisions for board development have been made in
the annual budget.
         The Board will elect officers to include a President, Vice President, and Treasurer. Officers shall
perform such duties and have such responsibilities as provided for in the By-laws or as otherwise
determined by the Board. The following briefly outlines their responsibilities.
         The President of the Board will preside at meetings of the Board of Directors. He/she will
exercise the powers and duties incidental to the office and as are delegated by the Board or specified in
the By-laws. The President may also serve as a second signature on all checks over an amount determined
by the finance committee.
         The Vice President will serve in the absence of the President. He/she will preside at meetings in
the President‘s absence and will perform duties delegated by the President and the Board. The Vice
President will be responsible for maintaining minutes of meetings and may also serve as a second
signature on all checks over an amount determined by the finance committee.

        The Treasurer will chair the finance committee of the Board and be responsible for overseeing the
Corporation‘s annual audit and, in collaboration with the executive director, submitting a yearly annual
report and annual budget to the Board for review and approval. The Treasurer may also serve as a second
signature on all checks over an amount determined by the finance committee.
        HRCA‘s first Board of Directors (Board) will consist of the founding team who led the school
during the charter process and several additional members approved by the Board during the charter
application period. A representative from Butler University will also be added to the Board, appointed by
the university‘s presidents and approved by the sitting Board. A parent representative will be selected to
serve a one-year term each year after nominations are made at the first parent meeting and an affirmative
vote taken at the school‘s second parent meeting. A parent representative may be elected to serve up to
two consecutive one-year terms. A teacher representative will be selected by an affirmative vote among
the teachers to serve a two-year term.
        As deemed appropriate and necessary, the Board will add members who will diversify its
membership, add important representation of an organization or community, contribute relevant expertise
and provide significant connections to possible funding opportunities. Founding Board members will
serve through the end of the first year of the charter term and then be invited to serve an additional three-
year term. New Board members will be asked to serve two or three-year terms, based upon their interest
and availability, to straddle Board membership.
        The following individuals will comprise HRCA‘s first Board of Directors. Dr.
Stephens currently serves as the Board‘s president, but upon charter approval will assume the position of
executive director, becoming an ex officio member, and a new president will be elected.

                                         HRCA Board of Directors
Dina Stephens, Board president, professor of education
Maureen Manier, Board vice president, director of marketing communications, Butler University
Jay Feller Board treasurer, director of tax operations, Somerset Financial Services
Linda Anderson, manager, Indiana Family and Social Services Administration Office of Human
Kay Clay, retired IPS art teacher
Carmen Johnson, auditor, Indiana Teachers Retirement Fund, adjunct professor, IUPUI,
Belinda Brown, field attorney for the National Labor Relations Board
Valerie Davidson, director of multicultural affairs, Butler University
James Wong, fleet manager, Frito Lay, Inc.

         We will continue to recruit additional board members from the community who can specifically
assist in the areas of finance and fundraising. We will specifically be working with the Chamber of
Commerce‘s Educational Committee and the Stanley K. Lacy Leadership Association. Both groups have
expressed an interest and willingness to identify potential board members with whom we will be meeting
in the coming months.
         To take full advantage of the rich human resources available in our community, HRCA has
formed an Advisory Board that will meet annually with the Board of Directors and provide ongoing
consultation to the Board and Executive director throughout the year.
         The following individuals have agreed to serve on the Advisory Board. The Advisory Board will
meet several times a year to discuss specific issues regarding fundraising, community outreach,
curriculum and marketing. While see membership on the Advisory Board as a logical stepping stone to
membership on the board, we also see an ongoing benefit to having an advisory board provide the board
and executive director with objective observations and assessments.

                                          HRCA Advisory Board
Dr. Kerry Kohler, president, Trinity Schools: Trinity Schools operates three classical schools in St. Paul,
MN, Falls Church, VA, and South Bend, IN. These schools have received statewide and national
recognition for their success.
Dr. Ilene Block, education consultant, Indiana Department of Education‘s Center for School
Improvement and Performance
Steven Stolen, director, capital gifts, Butler University. Mr.Stolen is leading Butler University‘s
fundraising efforts for its $28 million Performing Arts Complex. He is an active civic volunteer who is
prominently involved in area arts organizations.
Derek Redelman, senior fellow, director, education policy, Hudson Institute
Clarence Crain, board of directors, 100 Black Men; board of trustees, Butler University
Rita Beatriz Cano, Family Development Coordinator, El Puente Project at the Hispanic Education

         Upon approval of the charter, the Board will hire Dina Stephens as its executive director. After
careful review of the position‘s requirement, the Board has determined that Dr. Stephens possesses the
qualities and necessary experience to lead a school with HRCA‘s distinctive mission:
1. A passionate commitment to education and to the lifelong pursuit of knowledge
2. Dedication to the educational mission of Hope Renaissance Classical Academy
3. Personal demonstration of that commitment through the attainment of the terminal degree in her area
    of expertise
4. Advanced interpersonal and organizational skills
5. Extensive and proven knowledge of curriculum development, teaching methods and assessment
6. Previous experience in the areas of budget, management, personnel and fund raising

       The Executive director‘s responsibilities will include:
1. Hiring, supervising and evaluating teachers and staff
2. Working with Helicon Associates on issues regarding personnel management and grant identification
   and writing.
3. Developing and sustaining community partnerships
4. Leading teachers in curriculum development
5. Reporting to Board of Directors on school progress
6. Working with Board on development of policies and procedures

         Dr. Stephens will be evaluated annually by the Board. As part of this process, she will submit an
annual report that summarizes accomplishments and challenges encountered during the year. Before the
beginning of each school year, the Board will collaborate with Dr. Stephens to develop an evaluative
rubric that will give objective as well as subjective performance measurements.
         HRCA has chosen not to contract with an Educational Management Organization, instead
retaining the services of Helicon Associates, an Educational Business Services Provider led by two
former Michigan school system superintendents. A Helicon representative will attend the monthly Board
meetings as well as be responsible for producing quarterly and annual financial reports to the Treasurer of
the Board and the Executive Director.
         Helicon Associates is a privately held company providing business services to the chartered
school community. Unlike traditional education management companies (EMOs), Helicon does not
provide a curriculum or manage the instructional affairs of a school. Helicon‘s mission is to provide
creative educators and committed charter school boards the ability to focus on their educational mission,
by providing efficient and effective business management services. Helicon‘s specialized business
services model is especially effective for the small independent chartered school.
         Helicon Associates began its work with the charter school movement in 1995 under the then
fledgling Michigan carter school law. In its first endeavor Helicon assisted in opening a school initially

anticipated to serve 200 students. Helicon was chosen to assist in this effort because of Dr. Michael
Witucki‘s experience at all levels of school management coupled with his willingness to allow an inspired
and committed teacher create a school based on her vision. The first school, Summit Academy was a
resounding success. Over 400 families applied for the first two hundred places available.
         As the word about Helicon and Summit academy spread, other educators who had ideas for
schools but did not want to struggle with the constraints of working with an EMO approached Helicon for
assistance. As a consequence, without marketing or a conscious effort to expand, Helicon has grown to
serve nine chartered academies teaching children on 13 campuses. These schools range from rural to
urban, cover all grade levels, include large and small operations, and offer curricula from the most
traditional to the most modern and technological in focus.
         Helicon has had unique success in environments in which traditional EMOs have struggled. The
success has included small urban academies, academies in blue-collar suburbs, and in urban
neighborhoods in and around Detroit, Michigan. Michigan Automotive Academy, serving children in
grades k-12 in Detroit has been the fastest growing chartered academy in Michigan for the past two years.
         In serving the business needs of the schools with which it has a relationship Helicon has played a
leading role in solving many of the problems confronting chartered schools, including borrowing for cash
flow, leasing facilities, building and purchasing facilities, financing the purchase of facilities, acquiring
appropriate equipment to operate, staffing, management of payroll. Their success has also led Helicon to
acquire and deploy the infrastructure necessary to provide the highest quality service possible to
academies, and to develop sophisticated systems designed for efficiency and economy.
         With the infrastructure in place, and systems it has designed, Helicon is positioned to provide
business services to HRCA while allowing our board the freedom to chart the academic course of the
academy. Helicon works for boards of chartered academies subject to a contract defining services and
         Schools currently served by Helicon Associates include:

Academy                             Enrollment        Rural/Urban          Low Income
Marshall Academy,                   282               Small Town           n.a.
Marshall, MI
MI Automotive Academy,              686               Urban                34.6%
Detroit, MI
New Bedford Academy,                155               Suburban             n.a.
Bedford, MI
Pan Sophia,                         203               Rural                47.1%
Coldwater, MI
Thomas Gist,                        404               Urban                75.6%
Detroit, MI
Sauk Trail Academy                  99                Rural                n.a.
Osseo, MI
Summit Academy,                     434               Suburban             n.a.
Flat Rock, MI
Summit Academy North,               456               Suburban             20.7
Romulus, MI
Summit North MS,                    316               Suburban             20.7
Romulus, MI
Summit North HS,                    326               Suburban             20.7
Romulus, MI

Will Carleton Academy,              209               Rural               n.a.
Hillsdale, MI

        A draft contract between Helicon and HRCA is included in Appendix XIV.

D. Financial Management
         HRCA‘s business manager, the Board Finance Committee, and Helicon Associates will form a
financial triumvirate in managing and charting the school‘s finances. Quarterly and annual reports,
prepared by Helicon and reviewed and approved by the Board treasurer, will be submitted to the finance
committee and then presented to the board of directors.
         The Finance Committee is responsible for recommending to the Board of Directors an annual
operating budget; submitting five-year budget projections on an annual basis; ensuring adequate internal
controls are in place to properly account for and protect the financial activities of the school; developing
contingency plans for the most likely budget shortfall scenarios; recommending and securing an auditor;
monitoring the school‘s risk management plan and obtaining adequate insurance coverage; and ensuring
that any internal control or procedural recommendations of the independent auditors are implemented.
         The Board Treasurer chairs the Finance Committee and will receive staff support from the
business manager and from Helicon Associates.
         As specified by law, the school‘s finances will be audited on an annual basis by a contracted firm
and bi-annually by the State Board of Accounts. Helicon will be responsible, with oversight from the
Board Finance Committee and business manager, for completing and submitting the reporting forms
required by law, grant applications and applications for federal charter grants. Helicon will also be
responsible for completion of all materials necessary for obtaining federal and state funds and
         The business manager will be responsible for managing the school‘s finances in accordance with
the Board approved budget. The business manger will be responsible for the day-to-day management of
the school‘s cash flow, purchasing, preparing payroll information and daily/ongoing communication with
Helicon. As the administrator of HRCA‘s benefits and compensation program, Helicon will work closely
with the business manager.
         The executive director will work with the Board Finance Committee, Helicon Associates and the
business manger to draft an annual budget that fulfills HRCA‘s mission and meets the school‘s priorities.
Once approved by the finance committee, the Board Treasurer will present the budget to the Board of
Directors for review and approval. Budgets must be approved by March 1 of each academic year.
         The Development Committee of the Board of Directors will oversee the fundraising efforts of
HRCA. Upon receipt of its charter, HCRA plans to launch a vigorous fundraising effort. We have already
entered into preliminary discussions with other charter schools about collaborating on fund raising efforts
and activities. We have recruited individuals to our advisory board who have extensive fundraising
experience and contacts. We are continuing to vigorously recruit additional individuals to the advisory
board and board of directors who also possess a fundraising background and willingness to apply their
knowledge to fundraising to HRCA. We also intend to work on obtaining collaborative grants with our
community partners and other charter schools. We believe tremendous potential exists in this area.
         As much importance as we place on fundraising, we have decided not to include any anticipated
private revenues in our revenue projections for the first several years of operation in order to develop the
most realistic, conservatively developed budget possible.

E. Budget
       Budget Narrative
       The five-year projected budget and the assumptions used to develop it are presented in Appendix
XV. The budget includes the planning and implementation year (2003-04), reflecting those activities to be
conducted prior to the first operating year (2004-05).

         The major revenue assumption used to develop the budget projections is the school‘s enrollment.
Enrollment scales up over two years. HRCA opens with 180 pupils the first year. We will enroll 240
pupils in year 2 and then maintain at that capacity enrollment. This affects the budget projections in
several ways. Revenue calculations, such as state and local per-pupil revenue projections, are based on the
number of students served, and increase proportionally to student population growth. Some expenditures
also increase proportional to enrollment growth; others are fixed up-front costs.
         The assumptions used in our model, in many cases, are derived from published data of charter
school expenditures in other states. Other figures, such as legal and auditing fees, advertising, etc. are
estimates based on quotes from local vendors. Still other calculations, such as employment benefits,
insurance, technology and other capital expenditures, are estimates based on Helicon‘s experience in
working with start-up charter schools in Michigan.
         HRCA recognizes that it may experience a budget shortfall for a variety of reasons. Helicon
Associates, our business services firm, is charged with monitoring the actual monthly financial results
compared to the budget. Helicon‘s operations are monitored directly by the Finance Committee and
business manager. A Finance Subcommittee of the Board is specifically charged with financial
monitoring. These levels of scrutiny will provide early warning to the Board in cases where a deficit may
occur and allow us to take appropriate measures to address it. The Finance Subcommittee is also charged
with developing responses prior to the opening of the first school year to address the most likely
contingencies. These contingency plans will be reviewed with the full Board, the Executive Director and
the Business Manager so that all understand the steps to be taken.
         Through a combination of sound financial management, coupled with prudent short and long-
term borrowing, HRCA has taken specific measures to ensure our ability to meet any unanticipated
special education or transportation costs necessary for the school to be both open and accessible to all
         As reflected in the Five Year Budget, HRCA plans to borrow from the extent of its capacity from
the Indiana Common School Fund at below-market rate. This will facilitate our ability to meet operating
costs until the receipt of state and local revenues. Excess funds will be deposited in a conservatively
invested and insured depository institution and will serve as a reserve that might be tapped to address a
budget shortfall, low student enrollment, or any operational difficulties. Moreover, Helicon Associates,
because of its established assets and track record in providing financial management and planning
services for charter schools in Michigan, can – and has committed to — obtain and securitize short-term
borrowing from Comerica Bank, a Detroit-based national bank. HCRA will draw upon this borrowing
capacity during the first three to four months of its operation in anticipation of the Common School Fund
monies that we anticipate will be received in September 2004.
Revenue Assumptions
Per Pupil Funding.
     HCRA revenue assumptions are based on figures provided to us by the Board of the Indiana
Department of Education‘s School Financing Division. As the school plans to locate within the
Indianapolis Public School District (IPS), the state funds available per student are estimated at $6,353 per
year (for AY 2003-04). The local funds available for schools located within IPS boundaries equal 35% of
the state aid, which amounts to an additional allocation of $2,223 per year, bringing a combined
state/local total estimated funding level to $8,576 per student for Academic Year 2003-04. (While this
figure is likely to increase for the 2004-05 Academic Year – the year HRCA opens — and in future years,
we have used the $8,576 figure throughout our five-year revenue projections.)
        Enrollment Projections
        2004-05        180 students
        2005-06        240 students
        2006-07        240 students
        2007-08        240 students
        2008-09        240 students

Federal Start-Up Grants. HRCA has learned from the IDOE that in 2004-05 the Federal Start-up Grant
Program is fully funded. HRCA believes it should receive a $150,000 grant in the first year. If HRCA
does not receive this grant, the Board is committed to raising the $150,00 to avoid a budget shortfall. We
have not included the grant in the second two years of operation in the event that the grants do not
continue to be funded.
Lunch Revenue Lunch fund reimbursements are anticipated based on the formula provided by the Indiana
Department of Education.

Expenditure Assumptions
Classroom Instruction.
         The school will employ 13 teachers in the first year of the school‘s operation at an average of
$35,000 per year, with salaries variable based on individual qualifications and experience. A teacher‘s
aide will also be hired at a salary of $15,000. Each teacher will also receive a full benefits package
including medical, dental, and optical insurance, plus retirement benefits. (Benefits are budgeted at 30%
of salaries).
        Four additional teachers will be added in the second year of operation to accommodate the
addition of three eighth grade classes of 20 students each.
         Our budget for teaching salaries increases by 6% per year to create a merit pool for performance
(4%) and to account for an average rate of inflation (2%). These levels are consistent with salary inflation
factors that Helicon has evidenced in schools for which it provides services in Michigan. Moreover, we
believe that attracting and retaining top teachers is the single most important component of our school and
we intend to create merit incentives to retain teachers and staff.
Special Education.
In addition to a full-time teaching staff we will hire a single special education teacher at a $35,000 salary
level and will participate in the charter school special education cooperative and have allocated $20,000
in the budget for this purpose (a figure provided to us by the Special Education Division of Indiana‘s
Department of Education).
Board of Education Expenditures.
Includes legal services, audit services, and marketing/advertising costs.
Executive Administration.
The school will employ an Executive Director at $60,000 per year and a Business Manager at $37,000 per
year. (These salary figures inflate at a rate of 4% per year.)
Administrative Services.
The Board has also allocated $12,000 per year for consultant services to assist with curricular,
instructional, and operational issues. Administration services also include a budget for business services
to be provided by Helicon Associates at a rate of $400 per student per year. Figures for insurance, office
equipment, postage, and supplies are estimates based on schools of similar size to Hope Academy that
Helicon manages.
HCRA will avail itself of two forms of financing during its first year of operations. Interest payments for
these two loans are indicated as ―Interest – SAAN (State Aid Anticipation Note)‖. The first of these loans,
to be obtained prior to the school‘s opening, in July 2004, is a six-month note at 5% interest for $227,000.
This loan will be obtained through Comerica Bank, through a line of credit established by Helicon.

The second loan is through Indiana‘s Common School Fund, and is based on the following formula,
provided to us by the Indiana Department of Education‘s School Financing Division:
           STUDENT COUNT x State Portion of Per-Pupil Funding / 2 X 1.15 or
           180 x $6,353.14 / 2 x 1.15 = $ 658,535
As proscribed by statute, the term of this loan is 20 years at a rate not to exceed 4%. (We have used 4% in
our calculations.)
Inflation. We assume a 2% annual inflation rate on most budget items.
         We‘ve used figures that represent 15% of gross revenues to establish a conservative estimate of
the revenues necessary to support a lease. This is in line with national charter school data. In some ways
the figure is a crude measurement since charter schools across the country occupy a wide variety of
school spaces, everything from church basements to lavish, custom-built, single-use facilities. Moreover,
land and construction costs vary widely among states and cities. [For an analysis of charter school facility
costs nationwide see ―Charter School Facilities: Report from a national survey of charter schools,‖
Charter Friends National Network, April 2001 at The
report includes survey data from 280 charter schools in 19 states. See also a report that summarizes data
from four separate survey sources and analyzes several approaches to school construction and financing:
―Scale and Care: Charter Schools and New Urbanism‖ (2nd Ed.), Garber, Anderson and DiGiovanni,
Congress for the New Urbanism, November 2001. The report can be found at].
         We have established a location preference, developed a process and criteria for site selection, and
have a preliminary facility program. It is not yet determined whether HCRA will reuse an existing
building and modify it to its needs or build a new facility. The lease payments allocated in the budget will
allow for either approach.
         The rule of thumb for charter school developers is to allocate 100 square feet of built space per
student or, in the case of HCRA at its capacity, 24,000 square feet for 240 students. An average of the
five years of annual rent payments is $294,092 per year, or $12.25 per square foot per year. For a lightly
renovated facility, this figure may be high; for a newly built facility, the figure may be on the low side,
depending on the school‘s location. Other occupancy costs such as janitorial services, utilities,
maintenance and repair, are estimated at 5%, a building industry standard.

           F. Facilities
         HRCA will contract with Helicon Associates to provide a variety of administrative and financial
services. We will similarly ―out-source‖ our site-selection, facility acquisition, and facility management
services. As defined in our contract with Helicon, Michael Garber, an Indianapolis-based consultant and
developer, will acquire a site and build or rehabilitate a facility that will be used as the Hope Renaissance
Classical Academy.
         Garber Properties will purchase the facility and enter into a lease agreement with HRCA for the
charter‘s five-year term. Helicon Associates will guarantee the lease. Helicon‘s lease guarantee (as a
―credit tenant‖), coupled with the personal and corporate assets of the developer and other private
investors, will facilitate the financing of the land acquisition/new construction or building
purchase/rehabilitation of the school facility. The lease will be renewable and will include a purchase
         We‘ve budgeted 15% of the school‘s gross revenues to support a triple-net lease. We believe this
to be a conservative estimate based on national charter school data. The final lease price (and negotiated
purchase option price) will be dependant on a variety of factors including site location, construction/rehab

cost, and the financing cost. The availability of a federal start-up grant may also impact the scope of our
facility program.
A Small & Flexible School
         Being a small and academically oriented middle school gives us at least two distinct advantages
when seeking a school location, both in terms of the availability of suitable sites as well as on their
         First, since we will not have the same space requirements as other schools, we will have
considerably more sites open to us. While HRCA strongly emphasizes physical education, we do not
plan to offer a formal sports program and are, therefore, not limited in our site selection to locations that
provide the necessary acreage for organized sports or the interior space necessary for a gymnasium and
locker rooms. We will locate on a site that provides ample recreational space and are paying close
attention in our site-selection process to capitalizing on adjacencies (i.e., proximity to parks,
neighborhood centers or gyms, etc.)
         Second, being small affords us greater choice of contractors and greater flexibility with regard to
our building program. While only certain large firms can deliver, for example, a $150M high school,
there are plenty of contractors who can build or rehabilitate 25,000 square feet. This flexibility may
lower our overall costs, or may provide better facilities than we would otherwise be able to afford if our
options were more constrained by the number of potential vendors.
Location & Building
         The Hope Renaissance Classical Academy intends to locate within the IPS school district in the
northwest quadrant of Indianapolis. This location will allow the school to best capitalize on its
partnerships with Butler University, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Marion College, and the Eagle
Creek branch of the Marion County Library. While the northwest side of town is our first choice, we also
believe that children throughout the city would benefit from additional middle school options. In the
event that a suitable location cannot be found on the northwest side of town, we will broaden our
geographic search for a school site, keeping transportation options in mind.
Building a Learning Community
         Our criteria for site and facility selection relate directly to Hope Academy‘s educational
philosophy and mission. We believe that schools are more than bricks and mortar. They play an
important role in defining a neighborhood and a community. There is a social aspect of learning that is
strongly reinforced by the building of a learning community that extends beyond the walls of the school.
         In the mid-1800s, Horace Mann championed the creation of taxpayer-supported ―common
schools,‖ an idea that quickly spread throughout the country. These schools were often located at the
geographic center of a community and their mission was at the center of the community‘s life. The school
consolidation movement that began in the 1950s radically changed the place of the school in the
neighborhoods and in the lives of citizens. Harvard University president James Bryant took the lead in a
national campaign to abolish neighborhood schools. Conant and his supporters believed in economies of
scale, control by experts, and bureaucratic-hierarchical distribution of information and authority. Charter
schools are, in a sense, going ―back to the future.‖ They have been often termed ―New Common
Schools,‖ recalling both their connection to Mann‘s vision of the community-based schools of the past
while at the same time recognizing the challenges of the modern day.
         We believe that Hope Academy, as a small, neighborhood-scaled school, will provide a learning
environment in which students can feel more significant than in a larger school setting. A substantial
body of research on school size indicates that students in smaller schools feel more accountable and are
more inclined to participate both in class and in extracurricular activities. There is also evidence that
suggests smaller schools engender greater parental trust and involvement. Given a less intimidating
context than many modern middle schools provide, we expect that parents, teachers and students of
HRCA will all become familiar with each other, creating what sociologist James Colman termed the
necessary ―social capital‖ for children to succeed in life.

Site Identification and Preliminary Facility Program
        HRCA/Garber Properties intends to identify the school site by no later than November 2003.
Once a site is identified, and if construction work is necessary, HRCA will provide a plan that details how
such work will be completed, including the scope of work, the people and organizations involved in the
construction process, and a project timeline. The developer has worked with Indianapolis charter school
applicants in the past and is familiar with the necessary health, fire and safety codes and zoning
requirements that must be satisfied to open a charter school and the process and timeline for doing so.
        The following is a preliminary facility program for the Hope Academy. The space estimates will
vary based on final site selection and whether the school will occupy an existing building or construct a
new one.

#       Description                             Approx. Ft2/ea.         Total
12      Classrooms (broken into 5 clusters of 3 750                     9,000
        rooms each with movable walls)
2       Science classrooms with appropriate      1,000                  3,000
        plumbing and casework
1       Faculty workroom                         400                    400
1       Executive Director‘s office              300                    300
1       Business Manager‘s office                200                    200
1       Nurse‘s office/sickroom (with            200                    200
        appropriate plumbing)
1       Male adult restroom                      See below
1       Female adult restroom                    See below
        Appropriate restrooms for 240+           See below
1       Library/media center                     1,500                  1,500
1       Multi-purpose room/cafeteria (clear      4,000                  4,000
        span/free of columns)
1       Warming kitchen (with appropriate        300                    300
        SUBTOTAL                                                        18,900
        Hallways, janitorial space, storage,     Total square footage x 5,670
        bathrooms, common/reception area,        30%
        TOTAL                                                           24,570 sq. ft. (approx.
                                                                        100 sq. ft. per student)

*** As there is no provision for a gymnasium, a large outdoor recreation area is one of our site selection
          In the event that the school does choose to build a new facility, plans have already been
contemplated regarding its physical form. Attached as Appendix XVI is a prototype for what a
neighborhood-scale charter school might look like.
About the Developer
          Michael Garber, a principal of Garber Properties, has been involved in the analysis and
development of charter school policy at the federal, state and local level since the inception of the policy
innovation in Minnesota in 1991. In 1998, he collaborated with a California real estate developer and a
Minnesota builder to publish a manuscript aimed at introducing real estate investors to the charter school
market. Their architectural and financial modeling, titled Scale and Care: Charter Schools and New
Urbanism, has been featured in numerous national publications and has served as a valuable guide for
charter school founders and developers across the country. Recently Garber served on the development

team for establishing a multi-state charter school facility financing authority, a model for which is
currently operating in Michigan as the Public Education Finance Authority. His role in the project
consortium was to develop the underwriting criteria to evaluate charter school facilities.

        G. Transportation
        HRCA is committed to ensuring accessibility for all of its students. To this end, we have made
appropriate provisions within our budget to contract with Laidlaw to provide bus transportation for
students to the school. Strong consideration is being paid to locating the school on an Indy Go route to
assist with transportation needs. We will also work with interested parents to develop a car pool plan.
        We believe the key to responding to this important need will be parent communication. We intend
to meet with every incoming family during each summer to discuss the school‘s mission and to assess
student and family needs. During these meetings we will explore transportation options with families so
that we can develop a comprehensive transportation plan prior to the opening of school.

          H. Risk Management
          HCRA will manage the risks associated with operating the school proactively. HRCA‘s
philosophy is to acknowledge that there are risks in every activity of operating the school and to take all
reasonable measures to reduce these risks. Recognition of risks is part of the planning for all the aspects
of the school. The Treasurer and Executive Director will review all the areas of school activities to
identify potential risks to students, staff, volunteers, visitors and property. Each identified risk will be
addressed with a plan to eliminate the risk, or to ameliorate the potential adverse effects. Education
regarding the risks inherent in operating the school will be part of the orientation and ongoing training of
all staff members. HRCA will establish a Safety Committee that will be responsible to continuously
monitor areas of risk, investigate all accidents and complaints, and revise existing procedures to avoid
          HRCA may experience a loss in spite of its Risk Management program. HRCA will obtain
adequate insurance coverage to protect its financial viability in the case of a loss or claim. HRCA is
assured that adequate insurance coverage will be obtained based upon discussions with Pillar Group Risk
Management. Based on the guidelines stipulated by the Mayor‘s charter school office (below), we have
been given assurance that HRCA can be underwritten by Indiana Insurance under their school insurance
program. Indiana Insurance Company is a member of Liberty Mutual Insurance
Companies, which has an "A" (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best.
           Because a physical plant is yet to be identified, and a cost estimate would be speculative on the
part of an underwriter until that information is available, we have used a budget figure based on Helicon‘s
existing school clients.
          At a minimum, HRCA will obtain the following insurance coverage:
Comprehensive General Liability                               $1,000,000 per occurrence;
                                                              $2,000,000 aggregate
          (* Comprehensive General Liability Insurance will cover Corporal Punishment Liability and
          Athletic Participation Medical Coverage)
Directors‘ and Officers Liability/
Educators‘ Legal Liability/                                   $5,000,000 per occurrence;
Employment Practices Liability                                $5,000,000 aggregate

Umbrella (Excess Liability)                                $9,000,000 per occurrence;
                                                           $9,000,000 aggregate
Automobile Liability                                       $1,000,000 combined single limit
Sexual Abuse Liability                                     $1,000,000
Workers Compensation insurance                             As required by Indiana law

        I. Timeline
        HRCA has developed a comprehensive timeline that includes start-up activities. Upon receipt of
the charter, Dina Stephens will assume the responsibilities of executive director full-time. We also intend
to have a business manager hired and on-salary by the beginning of 2004. Accommodation has been made
in our projected 2003-04 budget for these costs. We intend to apply for a Walton Family Foundation
Grant to cover the administrative and marketing costs incurred before the opening of the school. Helicon
Associates is also prepared to secure a bridge loan for HRCA to cover any additional expenses. Garber
Properties will incur facility costs, with our first lease payment being made in July 2004.

  Tasks                               Responsible for Task                Timing        Scheduled for
  Governance and Management                                                             by:
  Board                               Board of HRCA                       Ongoing
  Application for Non-profit Status   Board                               Complete
  through Secretary of State
  Application for IRS Tax Exempt      Treasurer                           In Process    August, ‗03
  Establish Bank Account              Board President                     Complete
  Contract With Helicon Reviewed      Finance Committee/ HRCA             In Process    October, ‗03
  and Finalized                       Board
  Website Development and             Board Committee with In-kind                      January,‘04
  Management                          Services
  Permanent Executive Director        HRCA Board of Directors             In Process    November, ‗03
  /Business Manager Recruited &
  Reporting Calendar Developed        Executive Director/Business                       December, ‗03
  Policy Direction for School         Board of Directors                                January, ‗04
  Five year detailed budget/cash      Finance Committee/Board             In Process    January, ‗04
  flow plan                           Approval
  Completion of Criminal              Executive Director/Bus.                           December,‘03
  Background Checks –Board            Manager
  Acquisition of Insurance            Board of Directors/Helicon                        March-May,
  Coverage                            Assoc.                                            ‗04
  Set up accounting, purchasing,      Finance Committee/Helicon                         October, ‗03
  payroll and state reporting
  Prepare and submit available        Executive Director/Board            Ongoing
  grants (IDOE, Walton, etc.)
  Fundraising                         Board of Directors                  Ongoing
  Needs Assessment/Plan               Exec. Dir./Board Approval           In Process    October, ‗03
  Personnel Policies and Contract     Exec. Dir./Bus. Manager/HRCA        In Process    January,‘04
  Development/Organizational          Board
  Chart/Position Descriptions

Recruit staff – run ads, interview,   Executive Director/ Business
check licensure/background            Manager/Helicon Associates
Final Selection and Board             HRCA Board                                    April, 04
Approval of Staff
Staff Orientation                     Executive Director                            June, ‗04
Planning and Implementation of        Executive Director               In Process   June – August,
Staff Development Activities                                                        ‗04
Benefits Arrangements Complete        Finance Committee/Bus.                        June, ‗04
for Staff                             Manager/ Helicon Assoc.
Create Personnel Policy               Business Manager/Helicon/                     June, ‗04
                                      Exec. Director with Board
Student Recruitment
Develop                               HRCA Board                       Ongoing      December,‘03
Write/Print/Distribute                HRCA Board/ Marketing            Ongoing      February, ‗04
Informational Materials and           Committee
Press Releases
Organize Community                    Executive Director/Marketing     Ongoing      May, ‗04
Presentations                         Committee
Create Student Application            Exec. Dir./Business Manager                   February, ‗04
Open House                            Exec. Director and Staff                      August, ‗04
Student Registration/ Parent          Exec. Dir./Business Manager                   Feb.-Aug, ‗04
Documentation of Recruiting and       Exec. Dir./Business                           February 1, ‗04
Admission Process                     Manager/Board Review
Develop Student Handbook,             Executive Director               In Process   August, ‗04
Policies and Contract
Monitor Diversity and Outreach        Executive Director               Ongoing
Registration and Assessment           Exec. Dir./Business Manager                   June, ‗04
Comprehensive Special                 Exec. Director consulting with                June 1, ‗04
Education Plan                        Indpls. S.E. Cooperative

Conduct Practice Enrollment           Executive Director                            Feb., ‗04
Documentation of Recruiting and       Executive Director/Board                      Feb., ‗04
Admission Process                     Approval
Conduct Enrollment Lottery            Executive Director                            April, ‘04
Develop Procedures for                Business Manager/Board                        June,‘04
Collecting and Maintaining            Approval
Student Records
Projected Student Enrollment -        Executive Director/Business                   July 1, 04
Charter Section 17.7                  Manager
Develop Student Roster with ID        Business Manager                              July, 04
Develop ESL Plan based on             Executive Director in
student enrollment                    Consultation with
information/needs                     Board/Advisory Board

     Curriculum and Assessment
     Detail specific summary of           Executive Director/ Board       Ongoing       June 1, ‗04
     curriculum                           Oversight
     Plan/order/purchase instructional    Executive Director/ Business                  June 1, ‗04
     materials supplies                   Manager
     Review and Amend School              Executive Dir./Teaching Team/                 July 1, 04
     Calendar & Schedule                  Board Approval
     Class Schedules                      Executive Director              Ongoing       July 1, 04
     Develop detailed assessment and      Executive Director/Teaching     In Process    June, ‗04
     evaluation plan                      Team
     Order ISTEP and other testing        Executive Director                            June, ‗04
     Plan collection of baseline data     Executive Director                            June, ‗04
     Determine site options/retain        Garber Prop./Helicon/ Board     In Process    By October, ‘03
     Select site/ make appropriate        Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    December, ‗03
     contacts for zoning, safety,
     approval – ―Charter School
     Finalize financing/execute           Garber Prop./Helicon/Finance                  December, ‗03
     purchase agreement                   Committee/ Board
     Revise and finalize schematic        Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    December, ‗03–
     design                                                                             January, ‗04
     Hire construction managers or
     general contractor
     Architect completes final            Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    February, ‗04
     construction documents
     Obtain all permits                   Garber Properties                             February, ‗04
     Bid and award work to be             Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    February, ‗04
     Construction on building             Contractors                                   Feb.-April, ‗04
     Required Inspections Completed       Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    May, ‗04
     Final approvals and Certificate of   Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    July, ‗04
     Mayor‘s Office approval of           Garber Prop./Helicon/Board                    By August 1,
     Physical Plant                                                                     ‗04
     School Grand Opening                                                               August, ‗04

V.       Summary of Strengths
         We believe that Hope Renaissance Classical Academy offers a unique and important educational
option for Indianapolis middle school students. Our students will benefit from participating in a learning
community in which they will come to value and respect themselves and each other. All students will
know that they are valued, capable and accountable. They will feel respected as individuals and as
community members. Small class size and team teaching will provide students with the individual
attention they need to reach their full potential. HRCA‘s school culture will nurture self-esteem and high
academic performance.
         Block scheduling will allow flexibility within the school day and the time that students need to
pursue their interests and to become absorbed in learning. Staff and faculty alike will share and visibly

sustain the school ideology. Teachers will benefit from a close working relationship, autonomy to
develop learning programs, and collegial leadership.
         Our integrated arts curriculum and partnership with the local arts communities will enrich
students; art, music and drama teach beauty and strengthen understanding of self, as well as the cultural
bonds between the past and the future. The HRCA community will similarly benefit from strong
relationships formed with Butler University and Marian College, bringing to bear the resources of two
well-respected institutions of higher learning as well as the leadership and vision of their presidents.
         The Board of HRCA is sincerely committed to the growth and success of the school and has the
skills and community connections to provide essential support. They will continue to support students
and staff, pursue supplementary financial resources and contribute their varied talents. We believe that
HRCA will be a positive step towards advancing Mayor Peterson’s goal of bringing creative and
innovative options to Indianapolis community.


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