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Highly Capable Program Referral Window Open September 1-15

Posted by Elizabeth Egan on September 08, 2020

Referrals of students to determine possible eligibility for the Highly Capable Program will be accepted online September 1-15.

Currently, the District is accepting referrals for the Highly Capable Program during the September referral window as normal. All referred students will be screened. In past years, after initial screening, testing for some referred students occurred on two Saturdays in October. This year, some adjustments to the testing window will be necessary depending on what phase of the Safe Start plan King County is in and guidance from the Washington State Department of Health. These adjustments may include delayed testing dates and/or alternative screening measures. Updates will be provided when they are available through district eNews.

The District’s referral procedure may include screening procedures as allowed by state law. Please go to the Highly Capable program website for more information and to access the online referral questionnaire and referral form. Students may be referred by individuals, including teachers or other staff, parents, and members of the community. Individuals making a referral must use the District-provided online referral form. The following exceptions will apply:

  1. Referrals will not be accepted for students who were tested for the Highly Capable Program in the previous school year.
  2. Referrals for kindergarten students will not be accepted at this time. See below for information about the universal screening of kindergarten students.
  3. Referrals for second grade students will not be accepted at this time. See below for information about the universal screening of second-grade students.
  4. Referrals for students new to the district who enroll after September 15 will be accepted for 10 school days from the enrollment date.
  5. Students new to the district enrolling after the Highly Capable fall testing window who meet the screening criteria will be assessed prior to the beginning of the next school year.

Additional Highly Capable Updates

In addition to this September referral window, the District will conduct three other testing cycles during the year. This year, parts of the process will be adjusted due to the fully remote nature of school and the fluctuating transmission rates of the COVID19 virus. Here are updates about each of those testing cycles:

  • Universal Screening of all Kindergarten Students: Screening and testing of kindergarten students will be postponed until winter or spring and may include necessary adjustments to feasibly test students and to maintain safety per Washington State Department of Health guidelines fork-12 schools. Guidance from OSPI will be followed and communication will be forthcoming. The process will be regularly reviewed this fall in order to ensure the identification of highly capable kindergarten students this school year. In addition, the highly capable program teacher at each school will provide resources and guidance to teachers as needed.
  • Second Grade Universal Testing: Currently, universal testing of all second grade students for the Highly Capable Program is scheduled to proceed as normal. Each year all second grade students are given a full battery of tests beginning in January. Should adjustments be necessary to this plan, they may include delayed testing dates, implementation of a referral process and/or alternative screening measures.
  • New Student Referral Process: This process will remain the same. Students new to the district (after the referral window closes on September 15) are welcome to submit a Highly Capable Program referral form. All referrals will be screened and if appropriate tested before the start of the following school year.

Other Program Updates: All teachers in the Highly Capable program will be teaching remotely at the beginning of the school year. They will follow all procedures designed and agreed to by the District and the teacher’s union. They have been planning and learning this summer and are eager to get back to work with the students and families. Note that the delivery model may vary during remote learning.