Accelerated learning is a comprehensive approach to school change, developed in 1986 at Stanford University. Accelerated learning aims to create school success for all students by closing the achievement gap between at-risk and mainstream children. The idea is to radically change individual schools by redesigning and integrating curricular, instructional, and organizational practices so that they provide enrichment–not just remediation–for at-risk students.
The accelerated learning theory assumes that at-risk students have “learning gaps” in areas valued by schools and mainstream economic and social institutions. The program also assumes that remedial approaches fail to close these gaps because they don’t build on the students’ strengths and they don’t tap into the resources of teachers, parents, and the community.
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