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Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning at the University of Indianapolis

CELL focuses on helping educators transform learning, teaching, and leadership across all of Indiana’s K-12 schools and universities.



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PRESS RELEASE - August 12, 2022

 Washington HS in Washington, Indiana Earns Early College Endorsement

The Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning (CELL) at the University of Indianapolis recently announced the endorsement of the Early College (EC) program at Washington High School in Daviess County as highly effective in implementing with fidelity the Eight Core Principles of Early College.   Washington High School began its journey toward becoming an endorsed early college high school in 2018, and this year graduated 12 students with the Indiana College Core Certificate from Vincennes University with at least 30 transferable college credits. 

“We are proud of the rigorous curriculum we have developed with our higher education partners. It gets college bound students ready for the academic demands and sets them up for success. In addition, there’s a tremendous cost and time savings for students”, Assistant Superintendent Steve Peterson.

The Early College high school model creates small schools that are designed to give students jumpstarts for the rest of their lives. Students can earn both high school diplomas and up to two years of credit toward bachelor's or associate degrees. While open to all students, Early College programs specifically serve low-income young people, first-generation college students, English language learners, and students of color – all statistically underrepresented in higher education. 

To be considered for endorsement, Washington High School prepared a portfolio that addressed the eight required principles established by CELL including providing a rigorous curriculum, robust student supports, and completion data. In addition, a CELL team visited the school to interview administration, teachers, students, and parents about the EC and its benefits and challenges before designating the program as endorsed. 

"These newly-endorsed Early College High Schools have documented evidence of quality programs that help high school students graduate high school and accelerate into post-secondary education, whether at a four-year institution or a career/technical program. These students’ accomplishments are true game-changers for them and their families!” said Sandy Hillman, CELL Director of Early College.

CELL, at the University of Indianapolis, is a leading convener, catalyst, and collaborator for dynamic, innovative education change in Indiana. It has trained over 130 high schools across the state in the fundamentals of Early College and endorsed 44 Early Colleges as of July, 2022. Once a school receives endorsement, it is expected to further develop its opportunities and will be reviewed for re-endorsement every three years.

For more information, contact Sandy Hillman, Director of Early College,



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