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Getting Aquainted and Organized

GEAR UP Program supervisors should strive to work closely with the school
principal and with administrative staff members who are assigned to work with
them. School staff members and the GEAR UP program supervisor report to the

When starting a program such as GEAR UP, it is important that the school is prepared to provide a program office that can accommodate electronic networking and current technology, as well as provide enough space to develop and maintain rapport with the GEAR UP team.  In most cases, the school asks the program supervisor to hire support staff for program start-up and implementation. 

In the past, GEAR UP support has included:


Tutors were assigned to help in Math, Science, Social Studies and Reading.  At the beginning of each new school-year, the school's administration, counselor and GEAR UP program supervisor identified classrooms that would receive tutor support. Tutor placement was determined by student and classroom needs. Tutors assisted in increasing student engagement and success in the classroom.

Oftentimes, tutors were assigned to lead an after-school enrichment program. A leadership program is one example, dedicated to help students become active participants in school life and completing a school-year project.  This project provided students the opportunity to learn planning, fund raising and other necessary steps to complete their project.

Professional Development Opportunities (some examples include)
Each school-year started with a Tutor Training in August. The training included:

~ 2 days AVID Tutorology Training

~ 2 days Guided Language Acquisition Design (GLAD) Training

~ 1 day Reading Comprehension and Small Group Strategies Training

~ 1 day GEAR UP Policies & Procedures

~ 1 day Math Connect Training

~ 1 day Digital Learning Department (DLD) Training -- providing an
opportunity for tutors to become acquainted with the library database
research system and career planning with WOIS.
o WOIS is a college and career exploration tool with a
Washington State focus for middle and high schools. Students
can explore career paths, college majors, scholarships and

Examples of professional development opportunities provided to teachers include:

~ Literacy First Teacher Development -- now known as Secondary
Instruction Practices

~ Differentiated Instruction

~ Classroom Management and Lesson Plan Development

~ AVID (Achievement Via Individual Determination) Training

~ GLAD (Guided Language Acquisition Design)

~ English Language Learners (ELL) endorsements

School Events (some examples include)
Student cohort events:

~ 6th Grade Cohort Event at a community college

~ 6th Grade Campus Experience at WSU Tri-Cities

~ 7th Grade Cohort Event at local college

~ 8th Grade Cohort Event at Washington State University, Pullman

~ GEAR UP 8th Grade Career Day at Walla Walla Community College

All-School Life After High School Event at a middle school
Family events, such as:

~ Fall Open House/Family Fun Fair at a middle school

~ Winter-time Math & Science Night at a middle school

~ “College Bound” at a high school

~ WSU Pullman Parent/Child Campus Visit

~ Cinco de Mayo at a high school

End-of-the-school-year Celebration of Learning at a middle school, which:

  • assisted with 5th grade transition to middle school
  • assisted with 8th grade transition to high school, introducing families to high school activities and options
  • shared students' Best Works and student portfolios are shared with parents

~ College and financial aide events.

Event preparation and protocol:

Before a school event or campus visit is scheduled, the school’s GEAR UP program supervisor reviews the school calendar with school administration. School administration and the program supervisor develop the activity plan and timeline. Event preparation is implemented by teachers and/or the program supervisor. A post activity is required, to help ensure student skill building and knowledge acquisition.

School Technology: (some examples include)

a. Computers

b. Document cameras

c. Scientific calculators

d. Texas Instrument (TI )Navigator System

e. Classroom Performance System (CPS) -- “clickers” that gather student assessment information, as well as provide an avenue for digital communication between students and teacher.

After-School Programs (some examples include)
a. Middle School Math WASL prep

b. Preliminary SAT Scoring Service (PSSS)

c. Tutor support

Summer Programs (some examples include)
Summer Academy with:

~ Emphasis on math and reading,

~ Emphasis on hands-on, student centered activities,

~ And provided students scholarships to participate in the community college’s week-long “Kids College”.

Summer Camp mix-and-match:

~ A two-week Art Camp,

~ A week-long Computer Animation & Film Camp, and

~ A week-long Leadership Camp, which included a day of personal challenge at the area’s Ropes Course.

2-week-long Themed Camps:

~ Space & Technology Boot Camp,

~ Digital Animation, and

~ Think Outside of the Box Art Camp.

A high school provided students the opportunity for credit retrieval, using Plato.

Curricular Support: (some examples include)

a. Career interest exploration and career speeches

b. Year-long Navigation 101 advisory curriculum

c. Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID)

d. Computer-Aided Design (CAD) Exploratory Class

e. Computer Animation


READ MORE:   Teamwork
                     Maintaining Rapport with the Community
                     Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


This information was collected by Early Outreach Partnership staff during several interviews, as well as the Early Outreach Symposium held at WSU Tri-Cities on January 22, 2010. Oversight provided by Genoveva Morales-Ledesma, Executive Director, WSU Tri-Cities, Early Outreach Programs.