SOUTH BEND — Two charter schools sponsored by Education One, the charter school authorizing
body for Trine University, have been recognized as Distinguished Schools by Project
Lead the Way (PLTW).
Success Academy South Bend Primary School was honored as a PLTW Launch school, and
Career Academy South Bend Middle School was recognized as a PLTW Gateway school. Success
Academy was one of only two elementary schools in Indiana to earn the distinction,
while Career Academy was one of only five middle schools in the state honored.
“Our staff and students are highly engaged in our forward-thinking approach, which
includes a PLTW curriculum along with hands-on, project-based learning and technology,”
said Alex Hammel, superintendent of schools. “We will continue to push the boundaries
of learning by engaging every student to be a lifelong learner. “
PLTW programs inspire and engage students in science, technology, engineering and
math (STEM), equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in any
career path. In addition to technical skills, students in PLTW programs learn to solve
problems, think critically and creatively, communicate and collaborate.
The organization also provides teachers the training, resources and support needed
to engage students in real-world learning.
The Distinguished School program honors institutions for increasing access, engagement
and achievement in PLTW programs. Launch schools (K-5) offer a minimum of two PLTW
modules per grade level in the school and have a minimum of two PLTW Launch Lead Teachers,
with 75 percent of students or more participating in a PLTW Launch module. Gateway
schools (grades 6-8) offer a minimum of one PLTW Gateway unit per grade, and have
50 percent of students or more participate in a PLTW Gateway unit, with 25 percent
of students advancing to high school participating in two or more units.
Career Academy began offering PLTW in 2013 and Success Academy since it opened in
2015, and nearly all students at both schools participate in PLTW programs.
“At Career Academy South Bend a wide variety of technologies support and enhance our
student learning experience,” said Andrew Sarbacker, director of digital learning.
“Our staff is purposeful in planning lessons that incorporate exciting, engaging technologies
that prepare students for future success. Our creative use of technology empowers
students to 'own' their education and take significant steps toward their future goals.”