Christel House Academy releases statement following Bennett resignation

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The charter school that had its grade rating changed, reportedly under pressure from Former Indiana Superintendent Tony, has released a statement.

The release came hours after Bennett resigned from a similar position in Florida because of emails that detailed his efforts to keep Christel House Academy from receiving a bad grade under his school accountability program.

The school was run by a prominent Republican donor.

School founder Christel DeHaan released the following statement Thursday:

“Dr. Tony Bennett has helped re-shape education policy in Indiana, to give all Hoosier children the best possible opportunity for quality education and bright futures.    It is unfortunate that his actions relating to changing the grade given to 12 Indiana schools, including Christel House, may distract from the significant progress that has been made in Indiana.

“Neither I nor anyone connected with Christel House made any request to have any grade changed.  I was as surprised as anyone when I was contacted late in the morning of July 29th for a reaction to a soon-to-be-published Associated Press Story.

“Christel House was part of a very broad coalition of education reform interests, including the Indiana Chamber, Goodwill Industries, Stand For Children, the Office of the Mayor of Indianapolis, the Mind Trust, and many others, who worked with Dr. Bennett and the Indiana Department of Education to suggest improvements in the “A-F” grading system.
I endorse the call of many public officials of both political parties for a thorough review of the grades given to schools in 2012 and revisions made if they are inaccurate.  I have been and continue to be an advocate for the equitable assessment of all Indiana schools, and am confident that the Department of Education will pursue that.”

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