Academically Talented Program

The District provides an Academically Talented Program that is in accordance with Board Policy 6:135: Accelerated Placement Program (APP), which advances the District’s goal of providing educational programs with opportunities for each student to develop to his or her maximum potential. APP options include, but may not be limited to: 

(a) accelerating a student in a single subject; (b) full grade-level acceleration; and (c) early entrance to kindergarten or first grade. Participation in programs is open to all students who demonstrate high ability as defined by the District criteria and who may benefit from accelerated placement.

Key Dates 2020-21

January 

  • Students eligible for placement testing using scores from fall and winter iReady assessments and CogAT will be sent letters by January 24, 2021.

February 

  • Placement testing at buildings on February 8-19, 2021.   

March

  • Placement decision letters mailed by March 12, 2021.
  • Appeal forms due March 26, 2021.

April 
Appeals testing and appeal interviews moved to May. Please disregard April dates.

  • Appeals testing in buildings April 6 and 7, 2021 for 4th-7th grade students
  • Appeal interviews on April 14 and 15, 2021

May

  • Spring iReady testing window May 3-14, 2021
  • Appeals testing in buildings on May 3-7, 2021
  • Parents of newly eligible students notified about placement testing via email on May 18, 2021
  • Placement testing at buildings on May 19 & May 20, 2021
  • Placement decisions sent via email on May 24, 2021
  • Appeal forms due May 26, 2021, for newly tested students
  • Appeal prompts for newly tested students May 27 & May 28, 2021
  • Appeal interviews on May 25 & May 26, 2021

June

July

August 


Academically Talented Testing Schedule Summer 2021

Full Grade Acceleration

When considering the needs of high ability students, full grade acceleration or “grade-skipping” may meet the academic needs of certain students. Successful acceleration occurs when a student is not only doing the caliber of work necessary to be placed in the next grade, but also demonstrates the ability to do the caliber of work required of students in the top 10% of the next grade level. The goal of acceleration is to match the curriculum with the readiness and motivation of the learner. The process for determining if full grade acceleration is an appropriate step is a team process, involving the child, the classroom teacher, parents, specialists, and other staff. 

If you would like your child to be considered for Full Grade Acceleration, please complete the Acceleration Referral Form, and return the form to your child's school principal. 

For initial evaluation, a student must meet the following criteria:

  • Academic achievement results in math and reading as measured on a District approved achievement test at the 98th national percentile rank or higher.

AND

  • Aptitude/abilities test composite score results on a District approved assessment at the 98th national percentile rank or higher.

If a student meets the initial evaluation criteria, the District will follow a process that includes measures about social-emotional well-being, learner behaviors, and academic performance, such as the process outlined in the Iowa Acceleration Scale (IAS).

Early Entrance to Kindergarten or First Grade

A child entering Kindergarten must be five years old on or before September 1 of that school term. A child entering first grade must be six years old on or before September 1 of that school term. Consistent with Board Policy 6:135: Accelerated Placement Program, the District may grant a student Early Entrance to Kindergarten or Early Entrance to First Grade for students who demonstrate compelling evidence that they are both intellectually and socially advanced. 

 Early entrance to kindergarten and early entrance to first grade are considered forms of full grade acceleration.  Although a child may exhibit high ability, please be aware that they may not be ready for early entrance. Other important factors to consider are social maturity, personal development, and motor development. 

The decision for a child to enter school early can have a profound effect on his or her academic and social performance for the remainder of their school career. It is a decision that needs to be taken very seriously. Parents requesting early entrance should be aware that the criteria for early entry are rigorous.

Consideration Requirements:

To be eligible for consideration for Early Entrance to Kindergarten, the child must turn five years old by December 31 of the school year for which they are seeking entrance. To be eligible for consideration for Early Entrance to First Grade , the child must turn six years old by December 31 of the school year for which they are seeking entrance.

 Parents/guardians wishing to apply for Early Entrance to First Grade must have completed and submitted all documents required for kindergarten registration for the school term prior to submitting an early entry application.

Application:

The criteria for early entry are rigorous. Please carefully review the application process documents linked below. 

If you would like your child to be considered for early entry, please complete the Early Admissions Application, and return the form to your child's school principal.

All documentation for early admissions must be received by the school principal by April 16.

Elementary School Academically Talented Program

Students are identified for the AT Program beginning in third grade for fourth grade placement. At the primary level, student needs are met within the regular classroom and through enrichment activities.

Academically Talented Literacy (AT)
The district’s students who demonstrate “high ability” in literacy based on the identification process in each grade level qualify for Academically Talented (AT) Literacy. Students receive differentiated instruction to enrich the content and skills from the District’s Illinois State Standard aligned literacy curriculum. Supplemental materials specifically designed for gifted literacy learners support this AT curriculum.

Academically Talented Math (AT)
Students identified as academically talented in math participate in the AT math class. This class provides both acceleration and enrichment for high performing students at fourth and fifth grade. The curriculum highlights critical thinking, problem solving, math vocabulary, real-world math connections, and problem-based learning.

Middle School Programming

Academically Talented Literacy (AT)
The district’s students who demonstrate “high ability” in literacy based on the identification process in each grade level qualify for Academically Talented (AT) Literacy. These classes differentiate and enrich the content and skills from the District’s Illinois State Standard aligned literacy curriculum. Supplemental materials specifically designed for "high ability" literacy learners support this AT curriculum.



Academically Talented Documents

Summer Work

CR Cindy Ruesch

Director of Staff, Family, and Student Services