Whole-Grade Acceleration

Elementary level
Guidelines on Suitability for Whole-Grade Acceleration
Critical items from theIowa Acceleration Scale:

The following items are critical to the success of whole-grade acceleration. If any of these items apply to the student in question, whole-grade

acceleration is not recommended.

  • The student would be accelerated
    into the same grade as (or a higher grade than) a sibling.
  • The student presently has a sibling in the same grade.
  • The student indicates that he/she does not want to be whole-grade accelerated.

Points for consideration

1. Academically, the student should demonstrate skill levels above the average of the class they desire to enter.

2. Socially and emotionally the student should be free of any serious adjustment problems.

3. The student should be in good physical health. The student's size however should be considered only to the extent that competitive sports may be viewed as important in later years.

4. It is important that the student should not feel unduly pressured by parents/guardians. The student should be eager to move ahead.

5. Grade advancement should occur at the beginning of the school year.

6. Whole-Grade Acceleration should not take place during a transition year when the student would be required to move to a new building.

7. The child's future emotional and social needs should be taken into consideration. For example, friends who date or who drive, leaving home for further schooling and competitive athletics will occur at an earlier age for a child who has been Whole-Grade Accelerated.
8. All cases of Whole-Grade Acceleration will be arranged on a trial basis of six weeks. The student should be aware that if the trial period is not a success, he/she will return to the original grade placement. It is important that in this circumstance, the student should not be made to feel as though he/she had failed.

Whole-Grade Acceleration procedure

1. Screening for Whole-Grade Acceleration will be done in the early spring of the year for the next school year. Screening at any other time will take place only at the principal's discretion.

2. When the principal is notified that there is a child who is a candidate for Whole-Grade Acceleration, the parents will receive "Guidelines on Suitability for Whole-Grade Acceleration" from the PEAK teacher in the building.
3. Parents will notify the principal regarding their wishes about continuing the acceleration process.

4. If the parents wish to continue, an Acceleration Evaluation Committee conference will be held. The principal, counselor, PEAK teacher(s), and classroom teacher will be members of this team.
Parents will be invited to be in attendance and at this time will have the opportunity to present a portfolio with examples of their child's work. A determination as to whether to continue the acceleration process will be made. The portfolio needs to answer the question,"Does this child need whole grade acceleration in order to grow academically, socially, and emotionally, or would differentiation in the regular classroom be adequate to meet those needs?"

5. If the screening for Whole-Grade Acceleration is to continue, the PEAK teacher will complete the Iowa Acceleration Scale in conjunction with the parents and classroom teacher.

6. When theIowa Acceleration Scalescreening is completed, the Acceleration Evaluation Committee will convene again. At this time, the receiving teacher will be part of the committee. The committee will analyze the data from theIASand make a determination about placement for the following school year.

7. The principal will inform the parents of the committee's decision.
8. If acceleration is to occur, the Acceleration Evaluation Committee will meet six weeks into the new school year to review the student's placement and progress.