What are the different types of schools?

  1. Charter Schools – Charter schools are free, publicly-funded schools that are usually not a part of the traditional school district. Charter schools have their own school boards. Charter schools have open enrollment – that means that ANY student is allowed to apply, and admission is granted based on a lottery.  Charter schools can’t turn away students based on special education or language needs. Some charter schools provide transportation and some do not.
  2. IPS Choice Schools – IPS Choice schools (often called “Magnet” schools) are free public schools that offer specific instruction in a specific area, such as Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), Visual and Performing Arts (VPA), International Baccalaureate (IB), Career and Technical Education (CTE), World Languages (immersion and non-immersion), and many others. All IPS Choice programs provide transportation. All IPS high school programs are choice programs.
  3. Innovation Schools – Innovation schools are free, autonomous public schools that are not part of the traditional school district.  They have the authority to make decisions about all aspects of their school – both academic and operational – and are held accountable by IPS for agreed upon student outcomes. The purpose of innovation schools is to allow schools the additional flexibility to make decisions based on the specific needs of their student body.  Some innovation schools are also charter schools.
  4. Neighborhood Schools – A neighborhood school is a school that serves all students within a certain boundary. IPS guarantees each child admission to his or her neighborhood school for K-8th grades. You can find your neighborhood school in the Enroll Indy School Finder by entering your address and your child’s grade. Your neighborhood school will appear in orange.
  5. Private Schools – Private schools are operated by a private organization or individuals rather than being supported by government funds. Some private schools are religious, but not always. Private schools usually require tuition payments by families, but many in Indianapolis accept “vouchers,” which are known as Indiana Choice Scholarships. For more information on the Indiana Choice Scholarship program, please visit http://www.i4qed.org/calculator/qualify. Some private schools provide transportation and some do not. Enroll Indy does not work with private school at this time.
  6. Online/Virtual Schools – Online/Virtual Schools are schools that are operated on the internet and allow children to complete school work from home. Some districts operate their own virtual school programs, and there are other statewide virtual school options as well.
  7. Adult High Schools – Are you or your child 17+ years old and looking to finish your high school diploma? The Excel Centers and Christel House DORS programs allow adults to complete a full high school diploma. If you are interested in these programs, contact the school directly.