FORT PIERCE — A $10 million gift - the second largest individual gift in Indian River State College (IRSC) history - will help establish a charter high school in Indiantown, one of the region’s most economically depressed areas. The school will focus on career and workforce education and Dual Enrollment opportunities. Its unique educational foundation aims to develop entrepreneurial mindsets supporting individual and regional economic stability and enhance pathways for workforce and post-high school educational opportunities.
“Indiantown is a community with significant educational need, with high school students who are under-represented in programs such as Dual Enrollment and career and technical education,” states Dr. Timothy Moore, IRSC President. “Students in this predominately minority and low socio-economic community must currently travel to Stuart to attend high school, often spending hours getting to and from school.”
The idea of building brighter futures for under-served children and families is foremost for the donor, who wishes to remain anonymous. Removing barriers to education is critical to achieving that future.
Motivated by mission and recognizing Indian River State College’s track record and commitment to helping students of all ages, backgrounds and means achieve their dreams through education, the donor and the college embarked on a journey to explore possibilities. The result, a new career and technical education charter high school for Indiantown.
“Over my 22 years at Apple, I was up close and witness to transformational projects, including the iPhone. This is an equal moment of transformation for Indiantown with the alignment of the donor’s vision and the IRSC Foundation, Inc.” said Michael Hageloh, IRSC Executive Vice President of Strategic Initiatives.
The charter high school will be the second that IRSC operates in Martin County. IRSC’s Clark Advanced Learning Center, a public charter high school on the College’s Chastain Campus in Stuart, opened in 2004. Clark is among the top-scoring Treasure Coast schools based on Florida’s school grading system and among the top 20 high schools in all of Florida.
In August 2021, the Martin County Board of Commissioners approved a Memorandum of Understanding with IRSC and voiced support for establishing the new charter school, which would be on 25-acres of county property on Southwest Citrus Boulevard. In February 2022, the land lease was approved. While the school would provide a new opportunity chiefly for students in the Indiantown location, it will serve all of Martin County.
“We are energized by this opportunity to bring a charter high school to Indiantown,” declares President Moore. “We are grateful for the generosity and vision of our donor who is making this project possible and to the Martin County Board of Commissioners and Martin County School District for joining with us in this endeavor.”
A groundbreaking is expected later this year.