Recently, Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis lost a beloved member of our charter school. We are heartbroken. As we process our grief, we are reminded why we are a school community to begin with; we are here to be of service. We founded this school to instill strong academic pride in fifth to eighth graders — alongside deep character foundations and meaningful ethics.  We are fully aware that our middle schoolers face challenges daily and have suffered terrible losses in their short lives. We are here to be of purposeful support for our scholars and families. 

Middle school is stressful. In the best of times, the growth arc from fifth to eighth grade includes a rollercoaster of new hormones, more complex emotions, peer pressure and a heightened awareness of society and the world we inhabit. Right now, today, is not even close to the best of times. Every Vanguard student is managing incredible emotions due to the ongoing pandemic and the increase in violence to Black and Latinx communities. Feelings of isolation and fear are constant. How can we help? 

Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis and basketball

Social Emotional Learning at Vanguard Collegiate

We include social emotional learning (SEL) in our school days together to help every scholar understand and contextualize their feelings and experiences, and to carve out space to process what is happening in their lives and in their bodies. We also offer SEL as a way to stay connected to each other, to better comprehend the importance of our school as a place of comfort and guidance — and to share our distress and our struggles, whenever needed. 

Physical changes can happen hard and fast in middle school. We see our fifth to eighth grade scholars growing rapidly, and having huge appetites. Our scholars need more sleep. Some scholars are suddenly faster runners, but less agile. It’s all part of the middle school growth process, but it can feel strange. 

So, too, are the mental health challenges of middle school. Feelings and emotions change fast, feel more intense, or can be hard to let go. Recognizing and maintaining personal values can be harder than it used to be. Questioning authority and pushing back against boundaries is a new thing. Introspection, mood swings and a need for privacy might spring up seemingly overnight. We want to help our families, our community, and every middle schooler as an individual. Vanguard is here to be of service

How to help

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental, emotional or social health, here is how we help: 

  • Our School Counselor Marcia Lomax can be contacted anytime via email:
  • National Suicide Support Hotline: 800-273-8255 
  • Text IN To 741741 For Suicide Prevention

We are the only standalone middle school in the Near Westside and we are proud to serve this community. We reflect the diversity of our surrounding neighborhood and our teachers and staff look like the community we serve. We pledge to maintain our SEL efforts, to support every unique Vanguard scholar and family, to grow and serve together as a purposeful educational staff, and to embrace our broad and beloved 46222 community. This is the Vanguard way

About Vanguard 

Vanguard Collegiate of Indianapolis is unapologetically focused on the academic success of our scholars, our fifth to eighth grade students. Situated in Central Indianapolis, we provide high-quality instruction, rigorous curriculum, and supportive character development. We create pathways to college success and to becoming leaders in thought, word, and action. Be a Vanguard, today!