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Rationale

Acceleration is an intervention that moves students through an educational program at rates faster, or at younger ages, than typical. It means matching the level, complexity, and pace of the curriculum to the readiness and motivation of the student.

In the 2004 national report on acceleration, A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America's Brightest Students, research was presented on acceleration practices and results over the past fifty years. This report states that the practice of acceleration has been found to be a highly effective intervention for gifted students. The report goes on to reveal that acceleration has been:

  • well researched and documented as the best intervention for gifted students.
  • is consistently effective with gifted students.
  • found to have long-term beneficial effects, both academically and socially for gifted students.

Additionally, research indicates that when students' academic and social needs are not met, the results are boredom and disengagement from school. Closing our eyes to students' educational differences is neither democratic nor helpful.

For these reasons, the Rockwood School District makes whole-grade skipping available for appropriately selected students. For the majority of gifted students, in-class differentiation combined with services offered through the Rockwood Gifted Program (RGP) provide the learning opportunities needed for advanced students to be challenged. This document describes the process for identifying and serving the small percentage of gifted students for whom more aggressive forms of intervention are necessary. The selection process considers the whole student: social, emotional, physical, academic, and intellectual.