Workforce & Innovation News

February 2020


The Indiana Purple Star School Designation honors schools that have displayed a significant commitment to service members, veterans, students and families connected to our Nation’s Military. The Indiana Department of Education will honor the first cohort of schools earning this designation in the Fall of 2020.

Application deadline May 25, 2020

Nominate a Colleague!

Up to March 1st, you may nominate a teacher who exemplifies commendable

teaching in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and/or computer

science in grades K-6. The Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics

and Science Teaching is a great professional development experience that

brings many benefits. Teachers receive:

  • A certificate signed by the President of the United States;
  • A paid trip to Washington, D.C., to attend a series of recognition events and professional development opportunities;
  • A $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation; and
  • An opportunity to build lasting partnerships with colleagues across the nation.

You may nominate at the following link:

Reboot Summer Conference Series

7 redesigned, one-day learning experiences in 2020

High-quality PD for digital teaching and learning

Content from IDOE specialists and Indiana leaders

Just $20 for Indiana teachers and administrators


2020 Indiana Radon Poster Contest!

The Indiana Radon Poster Contest is held each year to spread awareness of radon gas, the second leading cause of lung cancer. The Indiana Radon Poster Contest is made possible through a partnership with the Indiana State Department of Health.

2020 Contest Rules and Entry Form

Entry deadline: March 6, 2020

Contact Information:

Indiana Radon Hotline: 1-800-272-9723

Poster Contest E-mail:

ASHG DNA Day Essay Contest Submissions Now Open

We are now accepting submissions for the American Society of Human Genetics' 2020 DNA Day Essay Contest! Bring genetics into your classroom by building this contest into your teaching plans and encouraging your students to participate.

Computer Science Honor Society

Interested in encouraging secondary students’ enthusiasm for computer science, honoring academic excellence, and promoting service? Consider starting a Computer Science Honor Society at your school. Visit the Computer Science Teachers Association website for more information.

Locally Created Pathways

The window to apply for a new Locally Created Pathway will open on Monday, March 2nd. Additional details regarding Locally Created Pathways can be found here.

Digital Learning

February is Indiana Digital Learning Month

Indiana Digital Learning Month 2020 offers many opportunities throughout February to learn about strengthening student learning experiences with the effective use of technology in instructional practices. This is an opportunity for educators to learn from others and to share their own digital learning stories. Check out Indiana Digital Learning Month events here. Visit the Digital Learning Day website and register your local events.

@INeLearn has turned over our Instagram account so that districts, schools, and teachers can share their story of being 1:1. Our goal is to get different 1:1 programs from all across the state involved to showcase what a week in the life of digital learners and leaders is all about. Do you want to show us how it works and why you are doing it? Apply to takeover our Instagram.

Workforce and Innovation Professional Learning Opportunities

Digital Course Curation Training Opportunity

The Indiana Department of Education is offering a two-day training to build the capacity of instructional leaders in digital course curation. Participants will focus on building the necessary skill set and knowledge base required for digital course curation and will begin building a course. The training is open to one person per district and will take place at Ball State University April 15-16. Space is limited and participants will be selected on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please register here. Contact Jennifer Watson for additional information.

Computer Science Professional Development

IDOE is working with five organizations - CodeHS, IndianaComputes!, IU School of Informatics and Computing, Nextech, and Project Lead The Way - to bring FREE computer science professional development to Indiana K-12 public and public charter school teachers. More information about each provider can be found below. Find additional information here. Contact Jake Koressel with questions.

  • CodeHS for 9-12 Educators – Two-day, in-person workshops focused on novice CS teachers and/or specific courses.
  • IndianaComputes! For K-12 Educators – Year-long (mostly virtual) program focused on building teacher content knowledge and confidence, culminates in an in-person capstone experience.
  • IU School of Informatics and Computing for 9-12 Educators – Approximately 11-day intensive summer experience focused on equity-driven, project-based Computing by Design curriculum.
  • Nextech for K-12 Educators – Variety of experiences ranging from one to nine days focused on various topics from integrating CS in elementary school to teaching AP Computer Science.
  • Project Lead The Way for 6-12 Educators – three- to ten-day intensive curriculum training focused on one of two middle school course options or one of four high school course options.

Book Club

All educators in the state of Indiana are invited to join the conversation. We will be reading Don't Ditch That Tech by Indiana educators Matt Miller, Nate Ridgway, and Angelia Ridgway beginning February 17th. Visit DOE's Moodle home, search for the course Don't Ditch That Tech , log into your Moodle account (or create one if you don't have one), and use the enrollment key dontditch to join the course. Contact Meri Carnahan for additional information.

Indiana CTO Council/IAPSS Driving K12 Innovation- Hurdles, Accelerators and Enablers Seminar

The Indiana CTO Council and Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents are teaming up once again for this seminar. This hands on seminar will help your team focus on how to drive innovation and what your district can and should do to redefine career readiness and better prepare students for their future in a changing landscape. School districts are encouraged to bring teams of the superintendent, chief technology officer, and assistant superintendents/curriculum directors as there will be interactive sessions interspersed throughout the day. Registration Form

February 20, 2020

Location: Wayne Township Grand Hall

Address: 400 N. High School Road
Indianapolis, IN 46214 United States

WBL Webinar Series

The Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship is facilitating a series of webinars focused on supporting work-based learning program development. The webinar series can be found at

STEM Supports from Purdue University

Registration is now open for Purdue University’s Spring AP Fridays. Purdue University’s College of Science also has a number of professional development opportunities for teachers beginning spring 2020 and continuing through July 2020. Click here for a summary of these opportunities. Please contact Sarah Nern, Purdue University K-12 Chemistry Outreach with questions.

Summer 2020: Externships with Purdue College of Science

Purdue College of Science is offering externship opportunities for teachers during the Summer 2020 session. We have reserved the weeks of June 15-19 and June 22-26 for interested teachers to join us and earn up to 15 points toward the externship requirement of HEA 1002. These will be unpaid externships, and will allow teachers opportunities to dive into curriculum development, grant writing, working with scientists, and professional development planning - all of which are job requirements of the College of Science Outreach Coordinators. Sign up today to reserve your spot with us this summer!

Registration Link for 2020 Summer Externships:

July 6 - July 9: Integrating STEM Using Student Research Projects

This Professional Development will take place in West Lafayette, IN and is appropriate for both middle and high school teachers. We are requesting that a minimum of two teachers from your school plan to attend this workshop together. The focus of this 4-day intensive PD will be on helping educators learn how to facilitate student research projects, integrate science data collection in your curriculum, and effectively use Question Formulation Technique in science project planning. Additionally, educators will learn how to collect pedosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere data through the NASA sponsored GLOBE program and become certified GLOBE teachers. The registration fee for this four day PD is $135 and includes parking, continental breakfast, and lunch. On-campus housing will be available for an additional fee.

The deadline to register for the Integrating STEM using Student Research Projects PD at Purdue is Friday, June 26, 2020.


July 14 - July 15: STEM and the Environment

Purdue University College of Science will be offering professional development opportunities for elementary teachers that will include hands-on lessons, activities that address various standards, and integration of those activities into their classroom. The registration fee for this two day PD is $135 and includes parking, continental breakfast, lunch, and kit materials for incorporating new content into their classrooms. On-campus housing will be available for an additional fee.

The deadline to register for the STEM and the Environment PD at Purdue is Wednesday, July 1, 2020.

Registration Link for our July 14-15 PD:

Summer 2020 Middle School Workshops

Purdue University College of Science will be offering professional development opportunities for middle school science teachers (grades 6,7,8) that will include hands-on lessons, activities that address various standards, and integration of those activities into their classroom. The registration fee for each grade level’s two day PD is $20 and includes parking, continental breakfast, lunch, and kit materials for incorporating new content into their classrooms. On-campus housing will be available for each PD session through the registration site for an additional fee.

The deadline to register for these two-day PD sessions at Purdue is Friday, July 10, 2020.

  • 6th Grade Science PD Date: July 20-21, 2020
  • 7th Grade Science PD Date: July 23-24, 2020
  • 8th Grade Science PD Date: July 27-28, 2020

Innovation Spotlight

Jessica Sinka (English teacher) and Tonya Aerts (Science teacher) from New Prairie United School Corporation nominated by Heidi Schellinger

Jessica and Tonya have begun a collaborative project this semester with Biomed students and Creative Writing students. The Creative Writing class is working to publish a book that promotes safety awareness for children. It specifically will be promoting AED awareness and kindness; showing that we must help those in need and what action steps to take. The classes are currently in the interview process with elementary teachers, students, and emergency personnel.

In addition to the multiple groups already involved, New Prairie art students will be helping to illustrate the book.

Innovative Educator Spotlight Nomination Form

Do you know someone who deserves recognition for innovative educational practices? Tell us about them in this nomination form.


Family Friendly Schools

Launched in 2015, the Family Friendly Schools designation focuses on addressing the academic, physical, emotional, and social needs of students, while providing the needed resources and fostering the active involvement of their families through schools and the community. The program recognizes and honors schools that welcome all families into the school community, communicate effectively, support student success, speak up for every child, share power, and collaborate with the community. Click this link to view the newly designated Family Friendly Schools as well as those that have renewed their designation.

IDOE Workforce and Innovation Team

Jake Koressel

Computer Science Specialist

Christy Hilton, PhD

STEM Specialist

Jennifer Watson

Senior Digital Learning Specialist

Shannon Dick

Innovation Specialist

Meri Carnahan

Learning Resources Specialist

Elizabeth Sutton

Project Coordinator