At Sycamore School, they understand that gifted children need a special education, and their mission reflects our focus and drive: “Sycamore School exists so that academically gifted students can experience the enriched, accelerated education they need to reach their potential and to lead responsible, constructive, fulfilling lives.” There are few schools in the country with such a clear focus and unique commitment to providing an appropriate education for gifted learners. All that they do, in and out of the classroom, is focused on helping gifted students realize their fullest potential while being known and loved.
Address: 1750 West 64th St., Indianapolis
Phone: (317) 202-2500
Open House Info: In-person event on October 25. Prospective families will RSVP online at sycamoreschool.org.
Q&A with Sycamore School:
What makes Sycamore unique?
At Sycamore School, we understand that gifted children need a special education, and our mission reflects our focus and drive: “Sycamore School exists so that academically gifted students can experience the enriched, accelerated education they need to reach their potential and to lead responsible, constructive, fulfilling lives.” There are few schools in the country with such a clear focus and unique commitment to providing an appropriate education for gifted learners. All that we do, in and out of the classroom, is focused on helping gifted students realize their fullest potential while being known and loved.
What is Sycamore’s age/grade range?
We enroll students in Preschool (age 3 by September 1) through Grade 8.
What is your enrollment policy? Are there any key dates parents should be aware of?
While we still can enroll students for the 2020-2021 school year, we are also accepting applications for enrollment in the Fall of 2021. Parents can apply online at www.sycamoreschool.org/admissions/how-to-apply. In addition to a parent questionnaire, a current teacher recommendation (if available), a recent report card (if available), and standardized achievement test results (if available), screening or testing for giftedness is used in assessing candidacy. For admission to Preschool, this involves a preschool screening and observation conducted at Sycamore. For admission to Prekindergarten through 8th grade, this involves IQ testing with a full-scale IQ at or near the Very Superior range. All applicants must demonstrate age-appropriate social and emotional development and behavior that would enable the child to function effectively in a classroom environment.
Do you offer financial assistance?
Yes, we offer need-based financial aid. During 2020-2021 we will award approximately $840,000 of financial aid to 21% of our students. You can learn more at www.sycamoreschool.org/admissions/financial-aid.
What are the standard school day hours?
The school day for Preschool through Grade 4 is 8:15 a.m.-3:15 p.m. There is a half-day option of 8:15-11:15 a.m. for Preschool and Prekindergarten, and extended care is available from 11:15 a.m.-3:15 p.m. for families who choose the half-day option. The school day for Middle School (Grades 5-8) is 8:10 a.m.-3:20 p.m.
Does Sycamore offer before/after school care? Does Sycamore offer afterschool activities?
We offer Quest for before and after school care, and there is a fee for this service. We also offer an extensive Extended Program that includes after school activities, which include academic teams, athletics, and other enrichment opportunities. Families can learn more at www.sycamoreschool.org/extended-programs.
Is there a uniform or dress code?
How many children attend Sycamore? How many students are in the average classroom?
Enrollment for 2020-2021 is 337, although enrollment often is approximately 400 students. Preschool has a maximum enrollment of 30 students, with 15 per classroom with a full-time teacher and two assistant teachers in each classroom. Prekindergarten has a maximum enrollment of 36 students, with 18 per classroom with a full-time teacher and two assistant teachers in each classroom. The maximum class size in remaining grades typically is 20 students. In Kindergarten and Lower School (Grades 1-4), there is a lead teacher and a full-time assistant teacher in each classroom.
Does Sycamore have a homework policy?
Does Sycamore offer support for students with special needs?
Sycamore does enroll some students who are “twice-exceptional,” or “2e.” These are gifted students with the potential for high achievement and who give evidence of one or more disabilities as defined by federal or state eligibility criteria. We develop educational plans that meet these students’ needs academically and in other applicable ways.
What specialty classes / extracurricular activities does Sycamore offer (gym, art, language, sports etc.)?
All students take specialty classes each year. These specials include art, media, music, physical education, and foreign language (Spanish). In addition to these, we offer an array of activities that nurture student interests academically and otherwise.
What extra safety measures is Sycamore taking during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Our full reopening plan is available at https://www.sycamoreschool.org/reopening-sycamore, and it includes safety measures such as the following:
● Social distancing
● Proper and frequent handwashing; discouragement of face touching
● No handshaking or hugging
● Face coverings for all students and staff in the building
● Little to no sharing of supplies and equipment; cleaning when necessary
● Outside instruction when possible
● Lunch in classrooms
● Limited student activity in communal spaces (hallways, lockers, Hagerman Commons)
● Assigned restrooms
● Temporary cancellation of in-person after-school activities, clubs, and teams
● Before and after school care provided based on prioritized need, with pre-registration required, cohorting, distancing, and health and hygiene measures
● HVAC upgrades to increase the amount of fresh air (complete air exchange every 10 minutes)
● Touchless faucets and dispensers in all Early Childhood classrooms
● Hand sanitizer stations at key locations
● Plexiglass partitions at entrances and in identified offices
● Placement of social distancing floor stickers
● Purchase of a Clorox 360 machine to electrostatically disinfect furniture and equipment
● Installation of open-top trash cans
● Touchless paper towel dispensers in all classrooms
● Addition of staff to night cleaning crew
● Faculty cleaning of high-touch areas and materials throughout the day
● Students facing the same direction in classrooms; desks rearranged for social distancing
● Closure of drinking fountains; bottle fillers active (Students should bring water bottles.)
● Signage to remind students about social distancing and hygiene
● Creation of isolation areas for symptomatic students or staff
● Availability of PPE, wipes, thermometers
● Elimination of non-essential volunteers; parents and visitors not allowed inside building
Who should parents contact for more information about Sycamore?
Interested families can contact Duane Emery, Director of Enrollment Management, at 317-202-2510 or [email protected]. Additionally, www.sycamoreschool.org/admissions outlines the admissions process and provides much information about the school.