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Gifted and Advanced Learning

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"Gifted and advanced" comes in lots of different forms

There are gifted and advanced learners in every grade at every school, and City Schools is committed to meeting their needs. More than 70 elementary and middle schools offer gifted and advanced learning programs. In high school, students have opportunities to pursue advanced programming of different kinds at numerous schools across the district. 

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Gifted and advanced learning by grade

Kindergarten to grade 5

In the early grades, gifted and advanced learners are grouped in their classrooms and receive enrichment through supplementary programs such as

Grades 6 to 8

In middle school, honors math, English, science, and social studies classes are available to challenge all students. Gifted and advanced learners taking these classes should expect to experience above-grade-level curricula in honors English and compacted/telescoped curricula in honors math. Through middle school choice, 5th-grade students can also apply for the Advanced Academics program and the Ingenuity Project, both of which are offered at several schools beginning in 6th grade.

Grades 9 to 12

In high school, gifted and advanced learners can take honors and Advanced Placement courses at numerous schools, and can pursue dual enrollment to earn college credits and mentorships. The Ingenuity Project is available at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, and Baltimore City College offers the International Baccalaureate. 

Since high school offerings vary, it is important for students to learn about the opportunities offered at each school as part of the choice process to ensure the best fit. The right time to start planning is 6th and 7th grade!

70 schools

offer gifted and advanced learning services

19 schools

have received the state's EGATE recognition

2 teachers

have been honored by the National Association of Gifted Children

Does gifted and advanced refer only to academic ability?

No. Gifted and advanced learners perform or show the potential to perform at high levels academically, artistically, creatively, or in leadership.

How are gifted and advanced learners identified?

All kindergarten students are screened with an ability assessment, and achievement results are monitored throughout the grades. Either the Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test (NNAT3) or the Cognitive Ability Test (CogAT) is used as an initial identifier, and formal identification then includes data from nationally normed achievement assessments in mathematics and reading (e.g., PARCC, i-Ready, or the Measure of Academic Progress). City Schools also uses motivation scales (GES-3) and creativity assessments (Torrance) in limited cases when students pre-qualify in only one of the two categories of ability or achievement.

What's the difference between gifted and advanced?

Gifted learners have ability and achievement scores in the 90th to 99th percentile range (level 5 on PARCC in both ELA and math), while advanced learners' scores fall in the 80th to 89th percentile range (level 4 on PARCC in both ELA and math).

What about students who are near the 80th percentile, but not quite there?

City Schools also identifies students for talent development when their ability scores exceed the national average but do not yet qualify them as advanced or gifted. 

Can my child be screened for gifted and advanced programs?

Please complete and submit the online referral form. Staff from the Gifted and Advanced Learning department in the district's Academics Office will review and forward the form to your child's school. You will be notified about the status of the submission at each stage of the process.

Resources

Local organizations
National organizations
Supporting your gifted learner at home
  • Hoagies: A comprehensive site designed for families of gifted and advanced learners. 
  • University of Connecticut's School of Education: Recommendations for of award-winning books, audiobooks, and books recommended by other children, adolescents, and young adults.
  • Academy of Achievement: This site seeks to bring students face to face with leaders, visionaries, and pioneers who have helped shape the world. 
  • Library of Congress: Resources for students and families ranging from classic books online to a national jukebox of recordings.