Several organizations in East Chicago, IN have collaborated to help local middle and elementary school students to succeed through a program called ECHO Middle School Matters.


This program provides students at Block Middle School, West Side Middle School and Harrison Elementary School with educational after school activities involving digital technology. ECHO helps to ensure that children are not falling behind in middle school and provides a safe, supervised environment once school lets out.


The program was formed as a result of the collaboration of the Northwest Indiana Federation of Interfaith Organizations, the City of East Chicago, LULAC, CSC Learning, Faith Temple, ECHO Community PTA, the East Chicago Public Library and the School City of East Chicago. The program received a $65,000 grant from the Foundations of East Chicago.


The majority of ECHO’s resources go towards helping students in reading and math. This is done by providing various teaching tools and technologies that the schools cannot afford on their own.


Several initiatives have also grown out of the ECHO Middle School Matters program, such as the ECHO Community PTA, which is the only community PTA group in the state of Indiana, the ECHO Big Universe Reading program and the Reading Plus Program. All of these projects are community-based and exist because of the work and volunteer hours put in by parents and community members.


Although the ECHO Middle School Matters program is still relatively new, those involved plan on making it bigger and better-able to help more students across the city of East Chicago. Several other schools in the city have been considered to be incorporated in the program in future years.


For more information on ECHO Middle School Matters and what the program does, visit



Foundations of East Chicago