Excellence Happens Here!
P-H-M is widely recognized as the premier school district in this region and has a reputation for excellence! The district earned an “A-rating” from the Indiana Department of Education for the 2018-19 school year and has consistently received an “A” rating every year since 2011!
High Performing Indiana School District
The Indiana Department of Education and the Office of School Accountability & Accreditation notified Penn-Harris-Madison that the district has maintained its identification as a Performance Qualified School District through the 2022-23 school year.
In order to be eligible for the performance qualified program, a district must receive an “A” for the previous school year. A district remains designated as a qualified district until it either receives a C or lower for one school year, or receives a B or lower for two consecutive school years.
P-H-M is among Indiana’s top performing public school corporations (Spring 2022 ILEARN).
- P-H-M is in the Top 3.67%, #11 out of Indiana’s public school districts (299)!
- Ranking of Indiana public schools that passed both ELA and Math:
- Northpoint Elementary School is #1
- Prairie Vista Elementary School is #2
- Discovery Middle School is #2
P-H-M’s post-pandemic learning recovery plan has included hiring instructional interventionists at all 15 schools, adding before and after school student tutoring sessions, increased targeted summer learning opportunities, and continued teacher professional development focused on accelerating student learning.
Nationally Recognized Students & Schools
U.S. News & World Report “Best Schools” designations has recently expanded to include elementary and middle schools. With Penn High School earning a “Best High School” designation again for 2022, P-H-M now also has several elementary and middle schools who also have earned this distinction! Ten of our elementary schools rank in the Top 30% of Indiana’s public elementary schools and two of our middle schools have earned the distinction of being named a U.S. News “Best Public Middle School” (click for more details).
Fall 2022, Penn High School junior Felix Zhang learned that he earned a perfect score, not missing a single question, on the college-level Advanced Placement® (AP®) Calculus AB Exam in Spring 2022—the only student in the world to do so! (click for more details and to see the local and national news coverage).
Penn High School has national reputation for excellence is based on its outstanding academic, athletic and fine arts programs. Penn has been featured on national TV network news for students’ ingenuity and creativity! In October 2019, Penn students were highlighted on CBS Evening News for their work on a service learning project that resulted in building an oversized Incredible Hulk Halloween wheelchair costume for a 4-year-old boy with cerebral palsy. The interdisciplinary project brought together art/sculpture students with robotics/engineering students; the lessons taught transcended the classroom.
- Elsie Rogers 4th grade Elementary Teacher Amanda Fox was the second P-H-M teacher to receive a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). Mrs. Fox was notified of her award in February 2022 and recognized at the White House in June 2022.
- Walt Disney Principal Ryan Towner received a 2022 Milken Educator Award for his excellence and innovation in education
- Penn STEM Academy Leader & Biology Teacher John Gensic was recognized in October 2019 at the White House for being the 2017 national award recipient for the PAEMST.
- P-H-M’s Secondary Teacher of the Year Jeannie Mitchel (Penn Freshman Academy Leader & French World Languages Teacher) was named a Top 10 Finalist for IDOE’s 2019 Teacher of the Year.
- P-H-M’s Elementary Teacher of the Year Christine Austin (Walt Disney 4th grade teacher) was named among the Top 30 Finalists for IDOE’s 2019 Teacher of th Year.
Dr. Jerry Thacker has been named Indiana’s Superintendent of the Year (2012) and Indiana’s Outstanding Educator of the Year (2017 and 2013)
Dr. Thacker has also been awarded The Sagamore of the Wabash (2014), the highest honor Indiana’s governor can bestow, by then Governor Mike Pence
College and Career Readiness
Penn High School supports college and career readiness with its academy structure. The academies serve as “smaller learning communities” where students build relationships while engaged in relevant learning experiences.
- STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) Academy
The Early College Academy is another option that fosters early success for students focused on obtaining an Associate Degree while completing their high school coursework
The Freshman Academy serves all ninth graders by providing a cohesive and highly supportive first-year experience
The Exceptional Education Academy provides exceptional educational resources to our special needs students in an inclusive environment.
We provide technology-rich learning environments, equipping teachers, students and classrooms with digital tools and resources. We are a 1:1 Technology district. A leader in the state providing devices for all 11,000 students in the District!
- Kindergarten students use mini-iPads to practice skills and gain proficiency
- Grades 1-5 use Chromebooks in the classroom to access classwork and resources
- Every student in grades 6-12, about 6,000 students, are issued a personal Chromebook for use at school and home!
Our schools include state-of-the-art science labs, digital production/broadcast studios and high-tech engineering/design spaces. Every classroom is equipped with interactive whiteboards and digital projectors. All elementary schools are equipped with microphones for students to better hear classroom instruction.
Moving to the area and need to enroll your child(ren)? Click here for a one-stop source of all the information you need to register your student(s). Families who live within the district’s boundaries are welcome to go directly to the school to enroll their children at any time or, during the summer months, by coming to the Educational Services Center at 55900 Bittersweet Road, Mishawaka, IN 46545.
Outside of the P-H-M District, but interested in enrolling your child(ren)? P-H-M is the district of choice for parents of more than 1,000 out-of-district students currently attending our schools.
We continue to admit non-resident students each year in accordance with Board Policy 5111. Once admitted, non-resident students who remain in good standing may continue attending at P-H-M until they graduate high school. There is no application fee or tuition expense.
Those interested in non-resident enrollment are encouraged to review the non-resident student application process, and take note when the annual application window opens and closes, and at which grade levels openings exist.
Follow the links below to learn more about Penn-Harris-Madison School Corporation!
- An “A” rated school district
- Nine “A” rated schools for the 2018-19 school year: Bittersweet, Elm Road, Elsie Rogers, Horizon, Moran, Northpoint and Prairie Vista Elementary Schools, along with Discovery Middle School and Penn High School. Bittersweet and Elm Road Elementary Schools both attained an "A" rating which is a grade level higher than their 2017-2018 accountability grade.
- Five “Four Star” Schools for the 2017-18 school year, as named by the IDOE are: Discovery Middle, Horizon Elementary, Northpoint Elementary, Prairie Vista Elementary and Penn High School.
- 76% of Class of 2022 Penn graduates earned in AP, Dual Credit or Industry Certification
- Penn Seniors consistently earn Lilly Endowment Scholarships. Over the past 24 years, 33 Penn students have been named accounting for 25% of the total number of Scholars!
Nearly half of Class of 2022 students graduate with Academic Honors
Penn High School is 20th in Indiana, #1 in the South Bend Area, and in the nation’s top 8% as ranked by US News & World Report’s 2022 U.S. News Best High Schools listing.
In 2022, Penn’s Early College Academy was endorsed as a Level 2 program WITH DISTINCTION. Penn High School is the first and only Early College High School in Indiana to achieve this level of distinction!
In 2021, Penn High School ranked FIRST in the state with the highest number of students earning the Indiana College Core (ICC)!
Penn High School earned the Project Lead the Way Distinguished School distinction in 2021-2022 & the STEM Academy has been certified as a Full STEM Certified Program by the Indiana Department of Education.
The IDOE named the Early College Academy a “UCAN Mentor School”
P-H-M was named among the Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) in the country by the the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation for 9th year in a row!
- 100% of our teachers are rated Effective or Highly Effective by the IDOE.
Triangle of Success
Superintendent Dr. Jerry Thacker often speaks about P-H-M’s “Triangle of Success” connecting students, teachers, parents.” It is this collaboration and relationships that has lead to our students being college and career ready.