Parental School Preferences: Shaping School Design

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Blankenship, Devin
Master of Leadership Development
The International Academy of the Midwest is a 501(c)(3) non-profit designed to serve as a secondary school for local and international teenagers. A small school of no more than 120 students, it will meet the individual needs of students and their families using proven methods. Located in beautiful south-central Indiana, our campus will be a safe and welcoming environment for both local and international teens, their families, and the community in which we are located. Over the first four years, the International Academy of the Midwest will grow from two student cohorts to eight. The student body will become more diverse and international each year when new students are admitted to the program. As a private non-profit, the school will rely primarily on tuition as its funding source. At a full tuition rate of $10,000 for local students and $15,000 for international students. We will ensure that scholarships are available for students whose families could not otherwise afford this caliber of education. As a 501(c)(3), we will fundraise and write grants to ensure quality programming and spectacular opportunities for our students. The school will be operated by a working board of professional specialists (including educators, lawyers, and fundraisers), as well as parents and alumni who bring a valued perspective to our mission. The director of the school will not only oversee day-to-day operations at the studestudent and staff levels, but also report significant milestones and needs to the board. Upon graduation, our students will be prepared to take the next step in being an engaged member of a global society. Coming from an environment which fosters individualized learning, our graduates will have both broad and deep knowledge of the world around them. They will possess college credit in areas of interest in order to prepare them for a certificate or degree from a third-level institution. On top of that, we expect our graduates to be poised and confident in public interactions. Each student will have extensive experience communicating with and presenting in front of peers, mentors, adult community members, and government officials. In the January 2017 Parental School Preferences survey pilot, which surveyed parents in a 25-mile radius of Modesto, Indiana, 44% of parents indicated that they did not believe local schools provided adequate options for them. We strive to change that by offering a secondary program like no other in the area. As needs change, we will grow into a role that guarantees that we are meeting our mission while serving local students and their families.