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Whiteland Community High School recognized for AP success

Wednesday, June 13th, 2018

The Indiana Department of Education on Tuesday awarded Whiteland Community High School for student success on AP exams for the 2016-2017 school year, according to State Rep. Woody Burton.

During the 2018 Indiana AP Recognition Ceremony, the DOE and College Board recognized more than 70 schools for having 25 percent or more of their graduating class earn a score of 3 out of 5 on at least one AP exam.

“Students who enroll in AP courses can jumpstart their college education and prepare for higher-level work while they are still in high school,” Burton said. “These college-level classes are more rigorous than traditional high school coursework, and if a student scores high enough, colleges and universities will award them credit. Our community is fortunate to have excellent educators teaching these courses, as they are instrumental in ensuring students are successful once they graduate high school.”

Burton said high school students take AP exams after they complete courses designed to demonstrate they are prepared to handle college-level work. With a successful AP exam score, a student can usually earn college credit. AP exams are developed by the College Board, a mission-driven, not-for-profit organization that connects students to success and opportunity in higher education.


State Rep. Woody Burton represents a portion of Johnson County.


PHOTO CAPTION: State Rep. Woody Burton  joins State Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Jennifer McCormick at the Statehouse on Tuesday, June 12, 2018, to recognize Whiteland Community High School for having 25 percent or more of their graduating class earn a score of 3 out of 5 on at least one AP exam. Pictured left to right: McCormick, Clark-Pleasant Community Schools Superintendent Dr. Patrick Spray; Brian Lukich, math teacher; Whiteland Community High School Principal Tom Zobel; Burton; and Dave McMillan, counselor.


Helping children find a stable home

Friday, January 5th, 2018

In Indiana, there are nearly twice as many children in the foster care system than there are available foster homes. In 2017, more than 23,000 Hoosier children were in need of a foster home. Almost 60 percent of all kids that enter the child welfare system are under 6 years old, and many leave home with only the clothes on their backs or what can fit into a trash bag.

These staggering statistics are heart wrenching. They highlight the need for a more streamlined adoption process and foster care program in Indiana. At any given time, there are 75 to 100 children in the Department of Child Service’s database waiting to be adopted. Appreciating the growing demands placed on the system, state lawmakers and the Holcomb Administration increased DCS funding nearly $600 million during the current two-year budget cycle.

Since the start of the New Year, a highly-respected national firm is performing a top-to-bottom audit of DCS procedures and policies. While I eagerly await their findings and recommendations this spring, I have already been working to improve efficiency and transparency within Indiana’s adoption and foster care systems. This session, my goal is to create measures that ensure and accelerate the placement of children in safe and loving homes. With my legislation, I hope to provide a clear process and guidelines for those involved in foster care and adoption. While often a thankless job, fostering or adopting a child is a rewarding experience. I respect anyone who is considering or currently participating in this process. You are needed!

This issue is very near and dear to my heart.

As a child, my father frequently abused my mother, siblings and me. When my mother tried to stop him, he would knock her unconscious. It wasn’t until my mother threatened to kill my father that she was granted a restraining order.

One night, while we were staying with my grandmother, my father barged in and forced my mom to leave with him at gun point. I remember waking up in the back of a police car, not knowing what was going on and then being taken to a group home where I was separated from my brother and sister. Eventually, my mother was able to escape and come back to us.

That was more than 60 years ago, but I still remember vividly how terrified I was as a child. I experienced the same confusion and emotions similar to what children in foster care experience today, and I want to ensure that no child has to go through what I went through.

Over the last few months, I have been meeting with adoptive and foster families, DCS officials, the governor and his staff, and other lawmakers to find the best solution for kids. I want to hear from Hoosiers about their experiences with the Indiana foster program and adoption process. You can share your story with me at or 317-232-9648.

Rep. Burton invites public to attend town hall meetings

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

State Rep. Woody Burton will host two town hall meetings next week to share information about the 2018 legislative session.

“I encourage constituents to attend a town hall meeting and participate in the discussion,” Burton said. “I’ve also invited other local and state officials from our area. I’m looking forward to productive conversations and hearing what is important to you and our community.”

Burton will discuss legislation he plans to introduce and issues that will likely be addressed during the upcoming legislative session during town hall meetings in Greenwood and Whiteland:

6-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 4

Greenwood City Hall

300 S. Madison Ave.

Greenwood, IN 46142

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 6

Whiteland Town Hall

549 Main St.

Whiteland, IN 46184

Those unable to attend can contact Burton with questions by emailing or calling 317-232-9648. The 2018 legislative session begins Wednesday, Jan. 3.

Burton invites locals to share experiences with foster care, adoption process

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

  State Rep. Woody Burton is hosting a listening forum to hear local Hoosiers’ experiences with Indiana’s foster care system and adoption process.

Burton said he plans to introduce legislation during the 2018 legislative session to make the process of fostering or adopting a child more transparent and efficient in Indiana.

“Fostering or adopting a child is a rewarding, yet often thankless job,” Burton said. “There is an increasing number of children in need of stable homes due to the growing opioid epidemic, so it is important that we make this process as efficient and transparent as possible. Well-thought-out policy comes from collaborating with all parties involved, which is why I encourage anyone who has experience with the foster care system and adoption process to attend this forum.”

The forum is open to the public and will be from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 30, at the Johnson County Public Library-White River Branch. Those unable to attend can share their experience with Burton by emailing or calling 317-232-9648.

Gearing up for the 2018 legislative session

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

It’s hard to believe that fall is already in full swing. Before we know it, we’ll be ringing in the New Year, and I’ll be back at the Statehouse working on legislation on behalf of our community. Over the next several weeks, I’ll be looking into potential bills I can introduce to the General Assembly for consideration. As I begin this process, I want to hear your ideas.

Because we won’t be creating a state biennial budget in 2018, the General Assembly will only meet from January through the middle of March. With less time to consider legislation, I’m only able to introduce up to five bills this year. I always look to Johnson County’s residents for legislation ideas first. If there are issues impacting local Hoosiers that might need legislative action, I want it addressed as quickly as possible.

There are many ways you can share your ideas for potential legislation with me. The quickest way is to call my office at 317-232-9648 or send me an email at I am diligent about following up with any communication I receive from constituents. In addition, you can set up a meeting with me to discuss your idea in person by contacting my office.

I also plan to host several town hall meetings leading up to the legislative session, and I encourage you and your family to attend to share your thoughts on any issue that may be facing Johnson County and the state. Be on the lookout for an announcement in the coming weeks with those dates and times. The best way to stay-up-to-date with upcoming town hall meetings and local events is through my e-newsletter. To sign up, visit

One of the most impactful laws I’ve authored was the result of constituent feedback. Cheryl Clemens shared the story of her son, Josh, with me at a county fair. Josh has dyslexia, a language-based learning disability that can affect an individual’s ability to read, write, spell and pronounce words. With Cheryl and Josh’s help, along with Indiana’s Decoding Dyslexia organization, we were able to create a law that requires new teachers to learn how to recognize dyslexia and other reading disorders.

The deadline to file legislation is the first week of December, and I’ll be considering potential bills up until that point. Again, do not hesitate to reach out to my office to share any concerns or issues that could be addressed at the Statehouse. I look forward to discussing your ideas and hear your feedback on how we can make our community an even better place to work, live and raise a family.