First student signs for new Sandusky Schools gifted center

District officials host conference to discuss plans for regional school with full-time gifted curriculum, opening Aug. 26
Alissa Widman Neese
May 14, 2013


Sandusky Schools officials met with community members Tuesday to outline plans for The Regional Center for Advanced Academic Studies, the next step in the district's transformation plan.

The advanced academic center will be a full-time school for gifted students from Sandusky Schools and from surrounding districts. It will be located at the former Jackson Junior High School building, at Jackson and West Madison streets.

The school will open Aug. 26 and can accommodate several hundred students. It will be entirely state-funded.

More than 50 people packed into the Sandusky school board building lobby for the news conference, where the center's first student, Kalen Russell, 11, signed an enrollment form in front of the crowd.

"I'm excited to be around more people who understand me and what I'm about," Russell said. "I think it will be a good challenge."

Get a copy of tomorrow's Register to learn more about plans for the school and why Russell's family is excited for his opportunity.

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BRAVO!!! Sandusky City Schools for doing what's in the best interest of the students in your district. Continue to do the great things for the kids in the community as you are doing and ignore some of the ignorant blogs I'm sure will come from the typical negative individuals who find fault in everything that good. Thank you for all that you do for the Sandusky Community. The great work will pay off for the students in the district.


"I'm excited to be around more people who understand me and what I'm about," Russell said. "I think it will be a good challenge."



Kalen is a boy and I agree with you, this will be a fantastic challenge for these gifted children.

Alissa Widman Neese's picture
Alissa Widman Neese

Yes, Kalen is the boy pictured.


misread as Karen...


This solves part of the reason I pulled my kids out of SCS. The teachers could not teach the "gifted" they were constantly being held back by those that were "slower". Charter Schools solved that problem for my kids though, and have seen been excelling. I am glad to see that SCS finally realized the problem and actually did something about it.

The other problem that I had with the schools was what my kids were witnessing everyday. The first week of Kindergarten my son witnessed 3 or 4 students get arrested after the attacked the Principal. It never really did get any better...

Eph 2 8-10

MrSand, I see things haven't changed in the 50+ years since I attended SHS....




Sounds great! As a Perkins Resident, I am excited to see this. I would definitely send my kids to this school if they were eligible. I can't wait to see how many open enrolled kids Perkins loses now. Maybe it's time to move those funds back to the operating budget. Won't have to worry about running out of room any longer. If SCS can make this old building work for gifted students, why can't we make our newer buildings work for our students? Kudos to SCS and their Superintendent. Too bad he wasn't on the market when we needed one. Great job Sandusky!!!


Excellent job SCS! What great opportunities for these students and the community!


Does this really create a "leap-frog" situation where the follower is now the leader?
So, if these Perkins kids are likely to enroll in SCS...what about consolidating districts?


I seriously doubt you'll see many, if any, Perkins students choosing to go to Sandusky.


Shame on those of you outside of our district who keep putting us down. I am really sick of it. I choose to live in Sandusky, and I choose to send my kids to Sandusky Schools, because they are an excellent district. They are the only district in the area that was willing and able to provide my highly gifted daughter with the services she needed starting in Kindergarten (and we did shop around, including Perkins).

We could afford to live anywhere. We are both college graduates, and I have a Master's degree. But we are proud to live in Sandusky! As a resident who moved here from out of state (I've been here for going on 13 years), I can say I am shocked by the continual put-downs of the CHILDREN of Sandusky, and the racial comments. These are our kids. Instead of tearing them down, let's support them. Come and see the good things happening in our buildings. Volunteer in our schools and make a difference in some of these kids' lives. Reading to a volunteer at school, when no one is willing or able to do so at home, can mean the difference between literacy and illiteracy or success and failure in life. Spending time with them, making them feel worthy and competent, can also mean the difference between success and failure in life.

All of my kids have had wonderful experiences in Sandusky schools. They are excited to go to school, are learning at a rapid rate, and are acheiving at high levels. They have wonderful friends from wonderful families. They feel safe at school, and when I've volunteered at their school, I have seen students of all abilities engaged and learning.

Yes, there are dysfunctional families, and there are kids who don't have enough support at home, and there are a very few disruptive kids in classrooms. But, I work in an educational setting and have been in most districts in the area, and I can say that THERE ARE PROBLEM FAMILIES AND DISRUPTIVE KIDS EVERYWHERE!

I can also say that Sandusky has phenomenal teachers, just like every district I've been in, who are working tremendously hard to make sure EVERY student is learning.

Let's pull together and support all of our children, whether raised in functional or dysfunctional homes, regardless of geographic location or economic situation. Our future depends on it!

Yellow Snow

Can house several hundred students and completely state funded. Sometimes Sandusky manages a good money grab.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

Having been enrolled in a gifted school in my childhood, I can appreciate the need for these and look forward to its opening!


Congratulations Kalen!!! Such an amazing opportunity and I know you're going to do amazing there!!!


It's about time! For too long, schools have concentrated on the learning disabled. It's not that these kids SHOULDN'T be taught, of course; it's just that mainstreaming them slows everybody else down, and devoting special classes to those kids diverts resources.

Sure, if you got the money, by all means educate those who are difficult to educate for whatever reason. But remember: The BEST you can do is make them self-sufficient so that they're not a drain on the rest of society. With the gifted, the sky can be the limit. And THOSE kids won't be "self-sufficient;" they'll be the doctors and scientists and inventors and engineers and astronauts who will give back far more than any investment in them now.

Enough of this notion that acknowledging some kids are smarter than others is a bad thing because it might result in "hurt feelings" for those who AREN'T classified as smarter than others. I never went home weeping because there was a better football player or a more talented singer! Sorry, but "smart" is as much of a gift as an ability to dance or play the piano, and it's past time we treated it as such.

Congrats, Sandusky! Finally a decision I can get 100% behind!


Kudos Sam. God made us different from color of skin to athletic ability or intelligence. It's time we just deal with it and stop having our government try to make us all the same.


Congratulations Kalen! You and so many other children in this district will now have a much deserved opportunity to expand and grow...good luck!


That was a nice thing to hear regarding the students signing for sandusky gift center. They are so good and kind. The academic center is going to bring more benefits to the students i hope so. I also write my essay online for most of the students writing projects. And i am happy to visit here.


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