Give Today

RGK Foundation grant will provide Christel House Academy teachers with professional development opportunities

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Indianapolis, Ind. – The RGK Foundation, based in Austin, Texas, awarded Christel House Academy South (CHAS) a $25,000 grant to support a pilot program to provide professional development opportunities for teachers. The program, entitled the Christel House Instructional Leadership Lab (CHILL), encourages teachers to provide peer mentoring and to assist in one another’s professional development.

“Helping at-risk, inner city children to succeed academically requires teachers who are equipped, knowledgeable, creative and engaged with their students,” said Carey Dahncke, Chief Academic Officer, Christel House Academy.  “We believe opportunities to acquire additional skills will help teachers be at their best and become leaders in their profession. We are very grateful to the RGK Foundation for allowing us to launch the CHILL pilot program.”

The RGK Foundation is an independent foundation established in 1966 that endeavors to be a catalyst for progressive change in humanitarian concerns. It seeks innovative projects in multiple areas, including education, and strives to advance knowledge, improve society and help realize human potential.

The CHILL program encourages peer-to-peer mentoring. It will take place during the regular school day and allows teachers to observe one another in the classroom setting, learn from each another, provide helpful feedback and encouragement, and ultimately, develop additional best practices for dissemination within the entire learning community of Christel House.

CHAS will provide 10 to 20 CHILL sessions during the 2014 calendar year and also electronically share the sessions with other Christel House learning centers in India, Mexico and South Africa, as well as with Christel House Academy West, scheduled to open in August 2014.

To learn more about Christel House, please visit:


About Christel House Academy

Established as a public charter school in 2002, Christel House Academy (CHA) currently transforms the lives of more than 600 at-risk students. The school has a 93 percent economically disadvantaged population and a nearly equal representation of Hispanic, Black and White students; 30 percent of the students are English language learners; and 16 percent receive special education services. CHA was Indiana’s first charter school to the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform, and was recognized as one of 10 MetLife Foundation–NAASP “Breakthrough Schools.”For more information, please visit