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District Skylerts

September 21, 2021
U.S. Department of Education Announces 2021 National Blue Ribbon Schools

Thorpe Creek Elementary receives highest national recognition awarded to schools.

Thorpe Creek Elementary was recognized today by U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona as one of the National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2021. The recognition is based on a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.

“This year’s cohort of honorees demonstrates what is possible when committed educators and school leaders create vibrant, welcoming, and affirming school cultures where rich teaching and learning can flourish,” said Secretary Cardona. “I commend all our Blue Ribbon honorees for working to keep students healthy and safe while meeting their academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs. In the face of unprecedented circumstances, you found creative ways to engage, care for, protect, and teach our children. Blue Ribbon Schools have so much to offer and can serve as a model for other schools and communities so that we can truly build back better.”

The coveted National Blue Ribbon Schools award affirms the hard work of educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. 

Thorpe Creek Elementary principal Sara Curran credits the school’s universal belief among staff and parents that all students are unique and capable. “This shared mindset drives high expectations and responsive instruction for each learner at TCE,” Curran said.

“We are very excited to have another one of our great schools be recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School. Our teachers, staff, students, parents, and community work together to create such an environment that fosters academic excellence and continued success, and I am proud to see Thorpe Creek’s commitment to learning recognized,” said Superintendent Dr. Yvonne Stokes of Hamilton Southeastern Schools.

Now in its 39th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed approximately 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools. The Department recognizes all schools in one of two performance categories, based on all student scores, subgroup student scores and graduation rates:

  • Exemplary High-Performing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests.
  • Exemplary Achievement Gap-Closing Schools are among their state’s highest performing schools in closing achievement gaps between a school’s student groups and all students.

This year, 325 schools were recognized, and Thorpe Creek was one of seven Indiana schools to receive the national honor. Hamilton Southeastern Schools is home to five other National Blue Ribbon Schools.

To hear more about Thorpe Creek's top honor, click here

September 2, 2021
As part of the executive order issued Wednesday by Governor Eric Holcomb, our COVID protocols for contact tracing and quarantining are changing. We are able to do this because we require students, teachers, staff and visitors to our schools to wear a mask. 
Please watch Superintendent Dr. Stokes’ video update about this change. CLICK HERE.
What do these changes mean for you?
Students and staff, who are masked in a classroom setting or on a school bus and identified as close contacts, will NOT have to quarantine if they are NOT showing any symptoms.

  • Close contacts will need to diligently monitor for daily symptoms of COVID-19.
  • If symptoms arise, the individual(s) will need to stay at home or be picked up from school.
PLEASE NOTE: This change does NOT apply to indoor activities such as: lunch, band, choir or extracurriculars where masks are not typically worn at all times. If identified as a close contact in these situations, the current quarantine guidelines found in the  Return to In-Person Instruction Planwill apply.
When do these changes take effect?
The new quarantine protocols will go into effect on Tuesday, September 7. This allows our building administrative teams and nurses to evaluate the various situations in which students are currently quarantined. You will be notified by your building regarding any changes to the date of return for your student.
Will you still notify all close contacts if they are exposed to a COVID positive individual?
We will continue to notify anyone identified as a close contact. The information must also be reported to local and state health officials. We will maintain our COVID Dashboard, which is updated on Monday mornings.

August 13, 2021
We have made it through a partial and  first full week of the new school year, and I believe I speak for most for when I say -- the return of students to our buildings has given us a renewed sense of purpose and appreciation to work alongside you and your family once again. 
I also would like to thank you for your understanding and patience as we ramped up operations following a year without being at full capacity. Last year was tough, and we had hoped this year would be as close to pre-COVID times for our students and staff as possible. Unfortunately, we are still living in a pandemic. 
As you know, our community and state are experiencing an increase in COVID-positive cases due the highly contagious, circulating Delta variant. Our schools are not immune to this trend. Since classes began, we have tracked 80 positive cases in our student population and more than 500 students have been notified as being a close contact. 
Due to the spike in numbers and the updated guidance from healthcare officials, beginning on Monday, August 16, masks will be required for all students and staff, K through 12, when indoors during the school day, regardless of vaccination status. 
I know this will not make everyone happy, but it is my goal to protect our students and staff and keep our schools open and running
This change is reflective of what local and state health departments have messaged to schools. 
A benefit of universal masking is that it will allow us to limit the number of students and staff quarantined by contact tracing at 3-feet versus at 6-feet in the classroom-setting only.
Another change we are making is reducing the length of quarantine for unvaccinated students and staff. The CDC gives options for reduced quarantine which include: 
  • 10-day quarantine with return to school on day 11, or 
  • 7-day quarantine with a return to school on day 8, if a negative PCR test was obtained on day 5, 6 or 7 from date of exposure. (Result must be given to school nurse â€‹prior to student's return to school.) 
In both circumstances, individuals will need to be symptom-free and will also need to maintain distancing and increase personal hygiene for the full the 14 days. 
Please remember, these changes are what we believe will keep our students learning in-person, in their classrooms -- and that is our goal. 
You can review these updates and more in our Return to In-person Instruction Plan, which can be downloaded from our website.

September 2, 2021

Hamilton Southeastern Schools

  • Central Office
  • 13485 Cumberland Road, Fishers, IN 46038
  • Office Hours: M - F 7:30am - 4:30pm 
  • (317) 594-4100  (800) 905-6665

  • To send a general inquiry email to the District Administration Office, click here

Our Mission

Hamilton Southeastern Schools, as a forward-thinking school district, provides excellence in education and opportunities to ensure the success of each and every student, to become a responsible citizen and to positively influence an ever-changing world community.

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