INDIANAPOLIS — Superintendents from three Indiana school corporations, including the state’s two largest, will be part of a panel discussing the future of education during the second annual Michael R. Cohen Lecture on Meaning and Motivation in Education.
Presented by the Indiana University School of Education at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, the panel titled “The Future of Public Education” will be at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 23, at the Indianapolis Public Library Central Library branch, 40 E. St. Clair St. The event is free and open to the public.
The panelists are actively involved in the administration of public education and have been outspoken advocates on behalf of their schools and education in general. The panel includes Lewis Ferebee, superintendent of the Indianapolis Public Schools, the largest district in Indiana. Before joining IPS in September 2013, Ferebee was the chief of staff for the Durham Public Schools and regional superintendent for Guilford County Schools, both in North Carolina.
Joining Ferebee will be Rocky Killion, superintendent of the West Lafayette Community School Corp. since 2007 and best known for championing public education through the documentary he commissioned, “Rise Above the Mark.” Killion has spoken often in conjunction with film screenings about the challenges facing public education both economically and politically. Last year the Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents named him Superintendent of the Year.
Wendy Robinson, superintendent of Fort Wayne Community Schools, is also on the panel. Robinson is nationally recognized for expertise in urban education. In 2009, the National Alliance of Black School Educators presented her with the Superintendent of the Year award. She has led the state’s second-largest school district since 2003 and has been in the Fort Wayne schools for nearly four decades.
The discussion will be moderated by Scott Elliot, the founding bureau chief of Chalkbeat Indiana, a nonprofit news organization covering educational change in Indiana.
The Cohen Lecture began last year. It honors professor emeritus in science education Michael Cohen, faculty member at the School of Education from 1968 to 2003. Cohen was selected in 1984 as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, an honor bestowed upon members by their peers in recognition of meritorious efforts to advance science or its applications. He wrote an influential elementary school textbook called “Discover Science,” and his research has focused on children and adults’ concepts and misconceptions of science and the environment.
The lecture is co-sponsored by the Indiana Urban Schools Association, the Indiana Coalition on Public Education, and WFYI public radio and television in Indianapolis. More details and registration are available online.