Every boy learns differently.
And that's okay. Our mission to educate the whole boy in mind, body, and spirit means giving all bright learners the tools and skills they need to succeed in high school and beyond.
The Upper School helps students with varied learning differences identify their learning styles. Do they learn better by reading text or by listening to a teacher? Our learning specialist helps the boys understand how they learn and what that style requires in each subject. She helps them learn to utilize the instructional accommodations they require to become successful students.
The Upper School student support program aims to meet each boy where he is as a learner through:
- Our Upper School Learning Center (USLC), a dedicated space where students who learn differently receive tailored, appropriate individual and/or small group academic and motivational supports to become expert learners.
- Articulated placement for all eighth graders the spring before ninth grade, for students matriculating from the Gilman Middle School and students new to Gilman.
- Summer Transition Program, offering academic support programs in multiple subjects.
- Focus on Five Academic Lab for Ninth Graders, mandatory small group and individualized support designed to teach students how to build academic success through executive skills coaching, self-advocacy development, and management of an academically vigorous curriculum while balancing a wide spectrum of extra curricular activities.
- Use of a 1:5 ratio for small group instruction, using a collaborative and supportive approach. A small group may include teachers, advisors, students, and academic coaches/tutors.
- 1:1 assistance from teachers or upperclassmen in our Math Lab, Science Help Center, Writing Center, and Senior Brothers program.
- Daily 70-minute end-of-day study period for ninth and tenth graders provides students time to work with their advisors, meet with faculty, complete homework assignments, or work in small groups.
Helping students become strategic learners who understand their unique learning profile and how this profile impacts the process of learning is the primary goal of the Academic Support Center. In collaboration with faculty who provide small group assistance and/or one-on-one support, the Director of Academic Support and Academic Coaches work closely with students diagnosed with a disability as defined by The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These students are guaranteed equal access to programs and services when the required documentation is presented which indicates a functional limitation to a major life activity, such as learning.
Accommodations for students with disabilities are intended to provide equal access to courses, services and programs. When families are concerned with the academic progress of their student, they must meet with the Director of Academic Support to discuss those concerns and to determine if the need for psycho-educational testing is warranted and/or to provide documentation to substantiate the need for educational testing to request accommodations. Accommodations and services are provided based on student needs, demonstrated functional limitations to learning and are determined on a case by case basis.
Accommodations for standardized Testing
Gilman follows the documentation guidelines consistent with those posted on the College Board website. However, we reserve the right to use the following criteria to determine the need for testing accommodations:
- A diagnosis, in and of itself, does not necessitate testing accommodations without evidence that the disabling condition leads to functional impairment to the student’s ability to learn and/or achieve.
- While educational testing may indicate variability in cognitive and/or academic profile, the documentation, when taken as a whole, must show a functional limitation to the student’s ability to learn and/or achieve.
- The documentation must show a history of consistent academic difficulties, need for special services, accommodations or a formal plan resulting from the disability, which would support the need for testing accommodations.
Accommodations may not fundamentally alter essential components of a course or curriculum nor are they for the sole purpose to increase a student’s performance on standardized testing.