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Mission, Values, Vision


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Mission Statement
To create empowering opportunities through an equitable, rigorous, and holistic education for all Christel House Indianapolis students and alumni so they actualize their aspirations and develop effective leadership skills.

Vision Statement
Christel House Indianapolis students and graduates are world changers. Every one. Every day.

Our Values
Around the world, Christel House students are empowered to realize their full potential and supported in an environment that allows them to learn and grow as individuals. Their experience is grounded in four foundational values of responsibility, respect, integrity, and independence that were put in place by our founder, Christel DeHaan.

At Christel House Indianapolis, our students, faculty and staff focus on the foundational values on a daily basis, and we also are grounded in the following statements to help shape the educational experience of our students and our interactions with the community.  

Inclusivity – Diversity of thought and perspective makes us stronger.  Everyone is unique and brings their own experiences, identities, culture, and ideas to their decision-making process and interactions with others. At Christel House Indianapolis we strive to provide the skills for our students to learn and interact with each other because our society will be stronger by working and learning together.

Inspiration – Students who are inspired are more successful in school and in life.  Christel House Indianapolis encourages students to dream big and assists them in setting a foundation to fulfill their aspirations.  

Lifelong learning – Learning should never end. Our faculty are reflective and look for new ways to grow and engage, and our students learn from those examples to continuously develop new skills that they can utilize in all aspects of their lives.  

Engagement - Whatever it takes for our students. All students deserve to be engaged in school and have an advocate who will walk beside them. Christel House Indianapolis builds relationships and connections with our students, their families, and our community partners to provide the best experience possible. Our students witness first-hand the importance of strong relationships and building trust in every aspect of their lives.  

Our Philosophy
We believe schools should educate the whole child, and not just focus on the “student” part. At Christel House Indianapolis, students get an education that recognizes them for who they are as a person. We walk alongside our students as they prepare for a life that transcends the classroom. 

We believe that students learn best when considered as whole, complicated people, with rich intellectual and emotional lives. Educating them means moving beyond classroom lessons and engaging students in creative ways. Christel House prepares students for a life bigger than the classroom, by educating the whole-child, creating authentic learning experiences, and challenging students and alumni to be exceptional in their education and beyond.

Our History
Christel House Indianapolis is one of the city’s longest-standing charter schools with a purpose to create a legacy of lifelong learning. While other schools focus solely on getting students into college, Christel House Indianapolis prepares them for a life beyond the classroom and helps them pave their own path— wherever it may take them.

Christel House Academy was originally organized by Christel DeHaan in 2002 and is the oldest charter school in operation in the state of Indiana. Christel House began as a K-4 charter school, but quickly grew in size and scope to become a network of charter schools and adult high schools in Indianapolis serving over 2100 children and adults.

Currently, Christel House Indianapolis is comprised of two K-8 academies, a high school, an innovation high school, and an adult high school (DORS) on three campuses. The largest campus was recently relocated to the 28-acre campus of Emmerich Manual High School. This community-serving campus houses Christel House Academy South (K-8), Watanabe HS, the sunsetting Emmerich Manual HS, DORS, a new Day Early Learning Center serving infants through pre-k students.  The westside campus houses Christel House Academy West and DORS.  The third DORS campus is on the main campus of Ivy Tech Community College.  Christel House Academy South was Indiana’s first charter school to receive the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform’s “School to Watch” designation. Christel House Indianapolis received additional recognition as an Indiana Achievement and Breakthrough School and both Christel House Academy South and West have been named National Schools of Character by, the only schools in the state to receive this national distinction.

The mission of Christel House Indianapolis is to create empowering opportunities through an equitable, rigorous, and holistic education for all students and alumni so they actualize their aspirations and develop effective leadership skills.  Christel House Indianapolis provides a holistic human development approach that focuses on building strong character to complement each student’s rigorous academic foundation. By building meaningful relationships, Christel House staff empower students of all ages to achieve academic and socio-emotional success. Taking this holistic approach allows Christel House to truly support students’ life aspirations, and in turn transform whole communities. Through our College and Careers program, we continue to support graduates for 5 years after graduation through post-secondary education and job placement, so they become self-sufficient, contributing members of society.