The mission of the Rossford Schools GEARS program is to
- Facilitate the development of the gifted child by addressing his/her unique needs academically, socially and emotionally.
- Enhance the academic achievement and motivation of gifted students by engaging them in an academically enriched and accelerated curriculum structured to meet their needs.
- Give the gifted students the necessary tools to help them understand and use effective problem solving and decision making strategies to prepare them for a meaningful participation in future endeavors and a global society.
- Allow them the opportunity to interact and learn from their academically and socially similar peers.
Children are assessed in second and fifth grade for superior cognitive ability, specific academic ability, creative thinking ability and visual or performing arts. The district’s assessment instruments for screening and identification are in accordance with Ohio Law and can be located via the district website. Students may qualify based on one or more of the following criteria in accordance with the State of Ohio: superior cognitive ability, specific academic ability, creative thinking ability and visual or performing arts. Children may be referred by parents, teachers, or self-referral for possible identification in an ongoing basis in Rossford for any area of giftedness as defined by Ohio Law.
Cluster grouping involves
placing several gifted students with one
teacher for instruction and receiving a differentiated
curriculum for that class. Studies have shown
that grouping students together who are identified
as gifted produces advanced academic achievement.
Students learn far more effectively when
grouped together and provided with challenging
material adapted to their learning style (Biddick,
2009). Gifted students often feel more comfortable
when they are surrounded by other students who
are like them. They are more likely to choose
challenging tasks when other students are working
on similar tasks at higher levels (Winebrenner and
Cluster grouping also allows gifted students the
opportunity to work together on a fulltime basis
without needing to be pulled out of the classroom
one day a week. With the full day pull-out model,
students miss opportunities for advanced achievement
in the regular education classroom with only
part-time differentiated instruction and material.
This model provides a lack of integration with the
regular classroom work.
The inclusion approach is
when students remain in the regular education classroom
and are visited there by a gifted intervention
specialist. The opportunity for differentiated instruction
is much stronger with this method.
The intervention specialist can provide the students
with more in depth studies, accelerated material, or
enrichment opportunities. Having two teachers in the
classroom can free one teacher up to work with a
small group or one-on-one. Keeping the students in
the classroom allows for more focus on core instruction
with opportunities for acceleration and in-depth