Working together through continuous learning to improve the quality of life for all in DeKalb County, Indiana
An education initiative of the Community Foundation of DeKalb County

School-Business Partnerships: What We’re Doing and What We’ve Accomplished April 2013

Our vision School-Bus Partner Photo

DeKalb County students attain outstanding performance as measured by academic, vocational, and civic achievement.

What we’ll accomplish

Increase the number of students prepared for work, post-secondary learning and career achievement.

Data we’re using to measure progress
  • Types of business and community partnerships involved with schools.
  • Number of connections made between teachers and community leaders through the Guest Speakers List.
  • Number of 9th – 12th grade students participating in experiential learning through DeKalb County schools.
  • 50 connections between teachers and community leaders from the Chamber/Learning Link Guest Speakers List.
  • Identification of additional types of mutually beneficial partnerships between businesses and schools.
Current status
  • DeKalb New Tech opened its doors in the Fall of 2012 to 118 freshmen. Highlights of their year include: Serving DeKalb County Impact Corporation’s “Covered With Love” program, winning Scholastic awards, and contributing to projects that have helped support local businesses and the community. A new class of 100+ freshmen will join New Tech in Fall 2013.
  • Maintaining a database of approximately 140 guest speakers willing to share their expertise with students.
  • Garrett, DeKalb County Central, DeKalb County Eastern and Lakewood Park high schools are all participating.
  • DeKalb High School has matched 7 students with 7 HOPE mentors with a focus on career options.
  • 38 high school students attended the 2013 DeKalb County Career Fair on February 21, compared to 8 who attended in 2012.

Based on countywide data, the Career Success Coalition’s top three concerns related to student achievement include:

  1. High school graduation rate
  2. Percent of students passing Algebra 1
  3. College admissions scores compared to target scores

An additional concern of the Career Success Coalition is that families may not know how to prepare and pay for their child’s post-high school education.

What we’re doing to achieve our goals
  • Partnering with the (northeast Indiana) Graduate Retention program to increase use of the team’s Guest Speaker List by teachers.
  • Working with the newly formed DeKalb County Career Success Coalition.
  • The community speakers database is being promoted for use by DeKalb County middle and high school teachers through a video produced by eight high school students. The video may be viewed at
  • Ongoing recruitment of (1) community professionals willing to share their career-related expertise with students, and; (2) HOPE mentors for DeKalb High School students.
  • Exploring learning opportunities for students beyond the school day through Learning For Life (

School-Business Road Map PDF