Gilchrist County School District Home Page
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Elementary Education
Wendy O'Steen
Director of Elementary Education and ESOL
(352) 463-3265

The Elementary Education Program provides support and services for the elementary students, parents, teachers, and administrators. The focus of the program is to provide every student the best start possible toward a successful, productive life.

Gilchrist County has two elementary school sites, Bell Elementary School and Trenton Elementary School. The two schools serve a total of approximately 1,434 students in kindergarten through fifth grades. The teacher to student ratio is 1:20 for the district's elementary schools, which are both fully accredited, and have earned high grades from the Department of Education.

For information about the Common Core State Standards, please access this link:  COMMON CORE
The schools provide the following:

Third Grade Summer Reading Camp offers students who scored a Level 1 on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) opportunities to advance and improve their reading skills. During the Summer Reading Camp experience, students are guided through skills in the areas of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension, providing these students high quality reading instruction in order for them to achieve the goal of reading on grade level. Please contact your local school or the district office for specific details.
Accelerated Reader (AR) is a computerized, progress monitoring system that provides a way for educators to monitor and guide students’ reading practice at their instructional level to ensure reading success for all students that participate. Each school has an organized AR Family Reading Night on their campus after school hours once a week. Please contact your child’s school for further details.

Parents:  Please access the weblink below in order to search for AR books by reading level, interest level, author, title, topic, and more!

SUMS Math and Science is an initiative that provides teachers and administrators with the training they need to effectively engage students with hands-on, inquiry-based learning to support all learning styles. This program allows student discover with daily lessons being led by the students and facilitated by the instructor.  

Families Building Better Readers workshop is held twice a year; once in the fall and once in the spring at the two elementary schools. This gives parents the chance to receive training on reading strategies to help their children with reading activities at home. The students that attend with their parents are also given the opportunity to gain knowledge of ways to continue reading excellence in their home environment. Dates vary so please read school monthly news letters to know when the next workshop will be held.

FCAT and NRT:  the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) is part of Florida’s overall plan to increase student achievement by implementing higher standards. The FCAT, administered to students in Grades 3-11, contains two basic components: criterion-referenced tests (CRT), measuring selected benchmarks in Mathematics, Reading, Science, and Writing from the Sunshine State Standards (SSS); and norm-referenced tests (NRT) in Reading and Mathematics, measuring individual student performance against national norms.
SAT10:  the Stanford Achievement Test Series, Tenth Edition offers a research-based, valid and reliable instrument to measure students’ performance on high academic standards. It is a multiple choice test. 
FCAT Test Maker: assessment is administered twice a year to third through fifth grade. This progress monitoring tool helps teachers and administrators monitor the individual student’s ability to display their knowledge of the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards. Teachers and administrators use this information to drive their instruction in the classroom.

FCIM:  FCIM (Florida’s Continuous Improvement Model) is a tool used to assess students on individual standards or skills based on their performance of their Progress Monitoring Tool, FCAT Test Maker. Students are given one mini assessment every two weeks on a Math, Reading and Science Standards. This data is compiled and examined by teachers and administrators and drives daily instruction in the class.
Pre/Post test: Teachers administer a pretest and post test each nine weeks on the standards that were taught in those nine weeks. This information allows teachers the opportunity to ensure that students have understanding of the content in the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards and are able to apply their knowledge to their daily assignments.
FAIR Florida’s Assessment for Instruction in Reading: FAIR is a progress monitoring tool for Reading Progression in grades kindergarten to fifth grade and is administered three times a year.  Students are given a series of assessments. The assessment system provides teachers screening, diagnostic, and progress monitoring information that is essential to guiding reading instruction.

ESOL - The English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program is a state funded instructional program for eligible Limited English Proficient (LEP) students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grades. The ESOL program is a standards-based curriculum emphasizing language proficiency. The program provides services to accommodate the needs of our linguistically and culturally diverse students and parents. The ESOL program’s overall goal is that LEP students will use English to communicate and demonstrate proficiencies in both academic and social settings. Translation services are provided for students and parents of our enrolled LEP population. District and school administrators, ESOL teachers and support staff members are certified or knowledgeable about providing LEP students with the appropriate educational and social experiences that will help build their English skills. 

For more information regarding the ESOL Program, please contact:
Wendy O’Steen
Gilchrist County School Board
Phone: 352-463-3265
FAX: 352-463-3276
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