Gifted Education

Welcome to the Midwest Regional Educational Service Center Gifted Services page. A gifted child's intellectual future can be shaped by both your awareness of the· needs of gifted students, as well as, the provision of appropriate services to best meet their needs. According to the Ohio Content Standards, "...students who can exceed the grade-level indicators and benchmarks set forth in the standards must be afforded the opportunity {to advance} and be encouraged to do so."  The MRESC offers professional consulting and coordinator services for school districts around the identification of gifted and talented students and supporting the teachers who serve them.


The mission of Gifted Services is to provide opportunities for students identified as gifted to excel through the educational and extension realms.


Through programming, extension opportunities, parent-teacher-student support and summer programming, it is the goal of our organization to provide every such opportunity for our students to succeed.


Administrative Consultation Program/Classroom Supervision
Parent Advocate Services Early Entrance to Kindergarten
Enrichment Programs Acceleration
Identification Assistance Cluster Grouping
Program Evaluation Post-Secondary Options
Assessment Analysis EMIS Data Reporting
Mentorships/Career Exploration Gifted Program Audits
Classroom Instruction Extension Opportunities
Specialized Academic and Art Opportunities Summer Extension Opportunities
State Updates and Annual Reports Staff Professional Development Opportunities

Identification Process

Identification Category

The identification process has three levels that give children an opportunity to show their potential giftedness. Pre-assessment strategies apply to all students and serve to create a pool of students for screening and identification. Screening strategies incorporate whole grade level testing done in the spring. Assessment strategies provide additional data necessary for an identification decision.


Students may be identified in the latter two stages of the process if appropriate data is available. Tests are chosen from the state approved list of tests. The scores for determining giftedness are set and published in the Ohio Revised Code.


Data obtained as part of the identification process then may be used to determine appropriate educational services. It is important to note that services are not mandated under this Code. Each district may choose which areas to serve and in what method.

The state of Ohio requires all school districts to identify students under Ohio Administrative Code 3301-51-15, which are gifted in superior cognitive ability, specific academic ability, creative thinking ability, and visual and/or performing arts ability. Nationally, the number of students identified represents the top 3-5 percent of the population. There are four areas of identification:

Superior Cognitive
Score two standard deviations above the mean minus the standard error of measurement on an intelligence test, perform at or above the 95th percentile on a basic or composite battery of a nationally normed achievement test; or attain an approved score on an above grade-level standardized, nationally normed test.

Specific Academic Ability
Perform at or above the 95th percentile at the national level on a standardized achievement test of specific academic ability in that field. A child may be identified as gifted in more than one specific academic ability field.

Creative Thinking Ability
Score one standard deviation above the mean minus the standard error of measurement on an intelligence test and attain a sufficient score, as established by the Ohio Department of Education (ODE), on a test of creative ability or a checklist of creative behavior.

Visual or Performing Arts Ability
Demonstrate to a trained individual through a display of work, an audition, or other performance or exhibition superior ability in a visual or performing arts area and attain a sufficient score, as established by ODE, on a checklist of behaviors related to a specific arts area.


Commonly Asked Questions

Director of Student Achievement:  Erica Baer


MRESC Gifted Intervention Specialists
Shelby County (serving Botkins & Fairlawn Local):   Roberta Young
Shelby County (serving Hardin-Houston):   Heidi Sherman
Logan County (serving Indian Lake Schools):   Cammie Honaker
Logan County (serving Riverside):   Gavrielle Mann


District Gifted Intervention Specialists
Benjamin Logan Local Schools:   Amy McCormick
Fort Loramie Local Schools:   Brad Turner
Jackson Center Local Schools:   Nancy Meyer
Russia Local Schools:   Heidi Sherman


District Gifted Enrichment Providers (non-GIS):
Fairlawn Local Schools:   Sonya Phillips

In what areas are students eligible for acceleration?

There are four common areas in which acceleration is commonly considered. They are as follows: early entrance to kindergarten, acceleration in specific subject areas, whole grade acceleration (grade-skipping), and early high school graduation.

Who should (and should not be) accelerated?
(taken from the Ohio Department of Education)

While actual decisions about acceleration should always be guided by a thorough evaluation of the student using a research-based evaluation process, most good candidates for acceleration will display some of the following characteristics:

• Demonstrates above average general cognitive ability;
• Achieves academically in one or more subject areas a grade level or more higher than the norm for his or her age;
• Expresses a desire for more challenging instruction;
• Is socially mature enough to adapt to an environment serving older students;
• Responds positively to the possibility of acceleration.

Acceleration may not be a good option for students with some of the following characteristics:

• Has an older sibling in the same school in the grade level to which the student may be accelerated;
• Is sufficiently challenged by the curriculum at his or her current grade level;
• Would be significantly less emotionally mature than typical students at the grade level to which he or she may be accelerated;
• Responds negatively to the possibility of acceleration.

Further, one type of acceleration for a student might be appropriate when another would not be. For example, a student who is very advanced in reading and writing ability but struggles in math and is of average ability in science and social studies might be an excellent candidate for subject acceleration in reading and language arts, but a poor candidate for a whole “grade skip.” Conversely, a student who is strong in several areas might be happier and more successful if accelerated on a full-time basis so she could be with one set of peers all day and travel less back and forth between classrooms than she would if accelerated in only one or two subject areas. Near the end of the K-12 experience, some students may be ready to move on to college on a full-time basis and benefit from the opportunity to graduate high school early. Others may prefer to stay in high school and take advantage of other options, such as Advanced Placement courses and the PSEO program.

What do I do if I would like my child to be evaluated for potential acceleration?

The first step is to complete the acceleration referral form and return it to the district Director of Student Achievement. If you have more specific questions, Erica Baer may be reached by sending an email HERE.