Gifted and Talented

Our program is designed to meet the academic, creative and affective needs of gifted and talented students through a collaborative partnership between staff, students and families.

Early Entrance to K

The deadline for requesting consideration for Early Entrance to Kindergarten for the upcoming school year is May 1st, 2019 . No requests will be considered after that date.

To inquire about early entrance for your child, please contact Monica Bowler.

Children who become five (5) years of age on or before September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year commences are eligible to enter kindergarten. A legal birth certificate or passport will be required as proof of age.

Students who demonstrate superior academic readiness will be considered for early entrance to kindergarten if they will be turning five (5) years of age between September 2 and August 31 of their early entrance school year.

All children in Minnesota are required to begin attending school by the age of seven. Children are not required by statute to complete kindergarten before beginning first grade. The district recommends that children attend kindergarten before entering first grade.

- Policy 503.01

Elementary School

Our program offers a variety of challenging learning opportunities for students who demonstrate outstanding academic ability. Students served by our program exhibit skills and understanding as measured by exceptionally high test scores and unique needs. Our students whose general ability and subject area achievement are at the top of the district will receive services. Since children grow and change, yearly they are assessed to determine current needs.

Some of our opportunities include:

  • PETS (Primary Education Thinking Skills) lessons for all students in first grade. These classes help students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills at an early age.
  • Pull-out and co-taught classes taught by gifted specialists in language arts/social studies and math/science for identified students in grades 3-5.
  • Total School Cluster Grouping and Differentiation at Bamber Valley, Gibbs, and Franklin in cooperation with Purdue University and funded by a Federal Javits grant.

Identification

Gifted Services are available in two areas: verbal and non-verbal. Verbal classes will incorporate reading standards. Non-verbal classes will incorporate mathematics and science standards.

Student data is reviewed in the spring to qualify for services for the following year using the criteria below. Students must meet one of the following criteria:

       Verbal        Non-Verbal
A CogAT Verbal (V) score of 122 or above AND one fall/spring NWEA in Reading in the 80th percentile or above (within the past year); OR A CogAT Quantitative + Non-verbal (Q+NV) score of 122 or above AND one fall/spring NWEA in Math in the 80th percentile or above (within the past year); OR
A CogAT Verbal (V) score of 116-121 AND one fall/spring NWEA in Reading in the 95th percentile or above (within the past year); OR A CogAT Quantitative + Non-verbal (Q+NV) score of 116-121 AND one fall/spring NWEA in Math in the 95th percentile or above (within the past year); OR
Two NWEA scores of 95th percentile or above out of the last three fall/spring NWEAs in Reading; OR Two NWEA scores of 95th percentile or above out of the last three fall/spring NWEAs in Math; OR
Portfolio Submission - These portfolios must be requested through your building gifted services specialist and are completed in school Portfolio Submission - These portfolios must be requested through your building gifted services specialist and are completed in school

 

Elementary Gifted Specialists

If you have any questions about services, please contact your school's Gifted and Talented teacher.

Elementary School Teacher Contact Information
Bamber Valley Colleen Sallee Email
Bishop Dana Bay Email
Churchill | Hoover Laura Heuton Email
Elton Hills Erika Van Evera Email
Folwell Laura Heuton Email
Franklin Erika Van Evera Email
Montessori at Franklin Erika Van Evera Email
Gage Dana Bay Email
Gibbs Brian Lynch Email
Jefferson Jackie Tilburt Email
Lincoln K-8 Vandi King Email
Longfellow 45-15 Vandi King Email
Pinewood  Vandi King Email
Riverside Central Jessica Tewalt Email
Sunset Terrace Jessica Tewalt Email
Washington Kim Reid Email

 

Important Dates

Grades 2 and 4

 September 20, 2018: Elementary Parent Informational Meeting 6:00 – 7:30 PM at Kellogg Middle School Auditorium.

 October 1, 2018: Deadline for families of new-to-district second and fourth graders to contact their gifted specialist if they wish to have their child considered for gifted services.

 November 27 – December 14, 2018: CogAT administered to all grade 2 and 4 students. Non-public school parents may contact Kim Reid by December 1, 2018 to register for the CogAT.

 Week of March 18, 2019: Students notified of qualification for gifted services based on test data for following year. Students who qualify for gifted services will begin classes in Fall 2019.

 April 11, 2019: Last day for Grade 2 and 4 students who did not qualify via test scores to request portfolio to qualify for gifted services for the 2019-20 academic year.

 April 11 – May 9, 2019: Portfolios completed at school under supervision of gifted specialists.

 Week of May 13, 2019: Portfolios evaluated by a panel of gifted specialists

 Week of May 20, 2019: Portfolio qualification or non-qualification results communicated to families.

Grade 3

 September 20, 2018: Elementary Parent Informational Meeting 6:00 – 7:30 PM. Kellogg Middle School Auditorium

 October 1, 2018: Deadline for families of new-to-district third graders to contact their gifted specialist if they wish to have their child considered for gifted services.

 April 11, 2019: Last day for Grade 2 and 4 students who did not qualify on the CogAT to request portfolio to qualify for gifted services for the 2019-20 academic year.

 April 11 – May 9, 2019: Portfolios completed at school under supervision of gifted specialists

 Week of May 13, 2019: Portfolios evaluated by a panel of gifted specialists

 Week of May 20, 2019: Portfolio qualification/non-qualification results communicated to families.

Grade 5

 September 20, 2018: Elementary Parent Informational Meeting 6:00 – 7:30 PM at Kellogg Middle School Auditorium.

 October 1, 2018: Deadline for families of new-to-district fifth graders to contact their gifted specialist if they wish to have their child considered for gifted services. Non-public school parents may request a portfolio assessment by contacting Kim Reid at by October 1, 2018.

 October 1, 2018: Highly Gifted Middle School Program portfolio requests due.

 October. 8– Nov. 7, 2018: Highly Gifted portfolios completed at school under supervision of a gifted specialist.

 October 25, 2018: Fifth Grade Open House for Highly Gifted Middle School Program. 6:00 – 7:30 PM at John Marshall High School.

 Week of November 12, 2018: Highly Gifted portfolios evaluated by a panel of gifted specialists.

 Week of November 20, 2018: All portfolio qualification or non-qualification results communicated to families. Students who qualify for the Highly Gifted Middle School Program will be emailed an application.

 November 29, 2018: Middle school and RAMP (Rochester Accelerated Math Program) meeting for parents. 6:00 – 7:30 PM at Kellogg Middle School auditorium.

 December 1-14, 2018: Students self-select middle school math courses for Grade 6 or Pre-Algebra (Single accelerated).

 January 7, 2019: Applications for Highly Gifted Middle School Program are due.

 Week of January 14th, 2018: Families notified of status for Highly Gifted Middle School Program.

 Week of May 6, 2019: Families are notified of Linear Algebra (Double Accelerated) middle school math placement by email.

Middle School

The middle level Gifted and Talented coordinators provide or facilitate a variety of experiences to help meet the needs of high ability and high achieving students. Some of these experiences are available to all students while other experiences are for those who meet qualifying criteria.

Middle School Gifted and Talented options include: 

  • Rochester Accelerated Math Program (RAMP)
  • Middle School Honors Classes
  • University of Minnesota's Talented Youth in Mathematics Program (UMTYMP) in Rochester
  • Highly Gifted Program at Friedell and Kellogg Middle School

If you have any questions about services, please contact your school's Gifted and Talented specialist.

Rochester Accelerated Math Program (RAMP)

The goal of RAMP is to provide an opportunity to accelerate math instruction for students who:

  • Are developmentally ready for the abstract thinking skills required in pre-algebra. 
  • Possess strong math skills.
  • Possess or are developing strong organizational and study skills.

It is the expectation that students in accelerated math will take four years of math in high school.

Criteria is found below:

Option 1

Earn a minimum of 7 out of 9 possible RAMP criteria points listed below:

  • Fourth Grade MCA Reading of 470 or higher OR Fifth Grade NWEA Reading of 80 NPR or higher OR Fourth Grade Verbal CogAT of 117 or higher = 1 point
  • Fourth Grade MCA Math of 470 or higher = 1 point
  • Fifth Grade NWEA Math Scores:
    • 90 NPR or higher = 3 points
    • 80 NPR or higher = 2 points
    • 70 NPR or higher = 1 point
  • Fourth Grade CogAT: (Quantitative + Non-Verbal)
    • 130 or higher = 4 points
    • 125 or higher = 3 points
    • 120 or higher = 2 points
    • 115 or higher = 1 point

Option 2

  • Pass the Orleans Hannah Test for Algebra Readiness at 90 percent or higher and have two standardized test scores in math at or above the 90th percentile in the past year.

Option 3

  • Pass the Pre-Algebra Appeals Test with a score of at least 80%.

Middle School Honors Classes

Middle School Honors Classes are offered in the areas of English/Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies. Students who are ready for more academic challenge may elect to register for these classes. The middle school honors classes move at a faster pace and provide more depth in certain topics. The middle school honors classes ARE NOT high school classes taught at the middle school, therefore, students enrolled in these courses will not earn high school credit by taking these classes.

The District strives to provide rigorous and active coursework that also addresses all of the Minnesota state standards. The ultimate goal is to blend challenge and success for all students.

University of Minnesota's Talented Youth in Mathematics Program (UMTYMP) in Rochester

UMTYMP (pronounced "umm-tee-ump") is an accelerated mathematics option for students who are highly gifted in mathematics. The experience students will have in the program is unique: class sizes are small, the scope of the curriculum allows students to cultivate both a rich depth and breadth of mathematics, the length of the program is shorter than comparable programs, and successful students will be granted honors level college credit for the courses taken in UMTYMP in the last three years of the program. This program is a branch of the larger UMTYMP program conducted on the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Campus by the Math Center for Educational Programs. For more detailed information on the program, visit the Math Center for Educational Program's website on UMTYMP.

Highly Gifted Program at Friedell and Kellogg Middle School

The Highly Gifted Program is a school within a school located at Friedell and Kellogg Middle Schools. The program is designed to meet the unique educational, social, and emotional needs of highly gifted students in grades 6-8 while still allowing the students to participate in a regular middle school experience.

  • The program provides rigorous content at an accelerated pace.
  • An open enrollment option is available to students who do not live within the Rochester School District.
  • Student selection is based on assessment measures determined by the Office of Student Advancement of Rochester Public Schools.
  • Highly gifted students will take part in four advanced subject disciplines: science, social studies, mathematics, and language arts.
  • Additionally, highly gifted students will participate in standard offerings such as music, physical education, and exploratory classes.

Criteria

Students and families considering this option must meet ONE of the following criteria:

  • CogAT composite or total score of 132 or higher.
  • CogAT composite/total score of 128 or higher AND NWEA test total in Reading of 97 NPR or higher AND NWEA test total in Math of 97 NPR or higher (Scores from grade 4 spring NWEAs and afterwards will be used).
  • A qualifying portfolio of exemplary work completed at school under the direction of the gifted specialist.

How and When to Apply

  • After the fourth-grade CogAT.
  • After the fourth-grade spring or fifth-grade NWEAs if qualifying with CogAT + NWEA scores.
  • By taking the CogAT in the Summer. Students must register by July 15. Call (507) 328-4299 to register.
  • By completing a qualifying Highly Gifted portfolio in fall.

Middle School Gifted Specialists

Middle School Teacher Contact Information
Friedell Joanne Michet Email
John Adams Denise Cooksey-Seabarkrob Email
Kellogg Daniel Mansfield Email
Lincoln K-8 Vandi King Email
Willow Creek Denise Cooksey-Seabarkrob Email

High School

Our three high schools, Century, John Marshall, and Mayo, offer a wide variety of courses to meet the needs of our students. Honors courses are open to all students that meet the course prerequisites. These courses extend the curriculum in terms of depth, quality of product, and pace of content. Honors classes are clearly defined on a student’s transcript; students are also encouraged to apply for an honors diploma.

Gifted Services also offers mentorships for juniors and seniors. A mentorship is an accelerated, individualized program of study for students who wish to learn a new skill, develop an interest, or explore a career under the supervision of a specialist in our community. Mentorships are excellent learning experiences outside of the normal classroom.

There are several ways to earn an honors credit:

  • Honors Courses
  • Honors Option Courses
  • Advanced Placement
  • Mentorship in the Community
  • Independent Study*

Honors Courses

Honors Courses are open to all students meeting the prerequisites.Honors courses add more depth and rigor to the existing curriculum. They promote higher level thinking skills and provide an opportunity for a variety of extended projects.

Honors Option Courses

Students desiring more challenge in a regular course may elect to receive honors credit by signing up for the honors option. To receive the honors credit the student must complete assignments designated by the instructor which differ in depth, pace, rigor, and/or use of higher level thinking skills. Students must complete an Honors Option Registration contract which must be signed by the teacher, student, and parent, and then submitted to the Gifted Specialist. The Honors option is only available for courses that do not already have a corresponding Honors designation.

Check the course listing in the registration guide for a list of these courses.

Mentorship in the Community

Mentorship is an accelerated, individualized program for students who want to explore a career field under the supervision of a specialist in the community. Mentorships are done outside of school and are offered for juniors and seniors only. Mentorship is an honors credit course that provides challenge beyond the traditional high school curriculum.

The mentorship is arranged and supervised by the Gifted Specialist.

Independent Study

This is an option for a student who has an area of interest beyond our curriculum. It requires the cooperation of an interested teacher. The student must write and submit a proposal for the principal’s approval. 

All honors courses taken for honors credit receive a weighted grade on your transcript. Weighted grading is a system for calculating grade point average and/or class rank that gives more points for honors, honors options, AP, and approved Independent Study courses. Non-weighted grades are based on a 4.0 scale, while weighted grades go above that 4.0 scale.

*Students must petition the Gifted Specialist to receive honors option credit for an independent study.

Honors Diploma

Students in the Honors Program are generally working towards an Honors diploma. Students receive an honors diploma by completing 24-semester honors credits over their four years in high school with a grade of an A or B.  All honors courses are clearly designated on the high school transcript by an H to the left of the class. We recommend students start planning in 9th or 10th grade for an honors diploma. Students wishing to earn an honors diploma must fill out and sign a self-nomination form and return it to their Gifted Specialist. There are currently 87 courses listed in the registration guide which count as honors credits.

Portfolios

What is a Prompt?

The portfolio has several sections known as prompts. Depending on what type of portfolio, you may be asked to read, write, do math problems, express your opinion, or explain scientific concepts.

How to Succeed: 

  • Students will complete one prompt at a time.
  • Students need to finish a prompt before handing it in; students may not return to work on a prompt once you have handed it in.
  • Here are a few tips to help your student be successful in their portfolio:
    • Read directions at least twice. Think about what being asked.

    • Have your student ask: Did I address exactly what the prompt or question was asking me to do?

    • Answer the questions with as much detail as possible.

    • Generally, for reading and writing prompts, answers of one or two sentences will not fully address the questions. 

    • Print responses neatly so they are easy to read. Students may ask the teacher if they are able to read the writing.

    • Before handing in each section of the portfolio, re-read the response to see that it is clear and makes sense.

    • Lastly, don’t hold back - your student should highlight all they know.

Other Information

Equity of Access

Rochester Public Schools strives to inform all parents, students, and staff about the gifted services opportunities available to students. 

Some districts require a teacher recommendation before a  student can be considered for gifted services. The result can be that students who are culturally, linguistically, and/or economically diverse are overlooked. RPS uses the CogAT (Cognitive Abilities Test) and the NWEA/MAP (Northwestern Evaluation Assessment/Measures of Educational Progress) tests to consider every child every year. The CogAT is given in grades 2 and 4; the NWEA MAP test is given twice or three times per year. For students who may not test well, there is a portfolio option to be considered for services. 

For more information, contact the Gifted Services office at (507) 328-4299.

Gateway

GATEway is the Rochester chapter of the Minnesota Council for the Gifted and Talented, a statewide not-for-profit organization that advocates for educational services for gifted and talented students.

You can access their website for more information on programming and meetings.