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Highly Capable Program Overview

The Sumner School District Highly Capable Program provides a continuum of services to eligible students in grades K-12. Highly Capable Program Services are different at various grades as the services offered are responsive to student needs as well as district capacity. Information regarding the continuum of services for each grade level are provided below.

Kindergarten students are served at their home school in their currently assigned Kindergarten classroom. Early Learning research supports the idea that Kindergarten students best opportunities for growth and learning occur when they are placed in typical Kindergarten classrooms with all different types of peers. Kindergarten teachers are responsible for providing enhanced and/or accelerated learning opportunities for their Highly Capable students.  These enhanced and/or accelerated learning opportunities can take many different forms, below are a few examples of what this MAY look like; flexible grouping for reading, math and/or integrated projects, opportunities for students to  explore their interests through academic choice activities as well as focusing on creative, critical and evaluative  thinking.  Kindergarten students are nominated in the fall of their Kindergarten year and begin services in the Winter of that same school year.

1st & 2nd grade students are served at their home schools.  Schools that have 3 or more qualified Highly Capable students at each grade level will serve students using Cluster Groups.  In Cluster Groups, 3-8 qualified Highly Capable students are placed together in the same classroom.  Schools with fewer than 3 qualified Highly Capable students per grade level will use differentiated instruction presented by the classroom teacher.

3rd-5th grade students are served in a "self-contained" all day program at one of our elementary schools with transportation provided.  Students who choose to stay at their home school instead of the self-contained all day program, will be placed in Cluster Groups (see above) or will receive differentiated instruction from their classroom teacher.

Middle School
6th-8th grade students are served in an all day program at Lakeridge Middle School that includes challenging programs in social studies, language arts, math and science content areas. Students who choose to stay at their home school will be placed in math and language arts classes in Cluster groups of 3-8 Highly Capable students who are grouped together in the same math and language arts classes.

High School
9th & 10th grade students are encouraged to participate in Honors classes that are offered at both of our High Schools.

11th & 12th grade students are encouraged to participate in our Advanced Placement classes at Bonney Lake High School or our International Baccalaureate classes offered at Sumner High School.

new Highly Capable Program 2016 Timeline

January 6-29: Referral forms available online and at school offices.  Parents, community members and teacher/staff members may refer students for Highly Capable Services.       

January 29: Deadline to submit referrals to the school - (the window for submitting referrals is now closed)    

February 1-27: (Kindergarten only) Referred Kindergarten students will begin the first step of the eligibility process by academic testing using the Measurement of Academic Progress (MAP). This assessment will be administered by teacher or designated staff team member identified by the building principal. Important note: Teachers may begin MAP testing as soon as the referral packet has been completed by either the teacher or parent and submitted with the signed “Permission Slip to Test”. For the second step of the eligibility process, the school will administer the Cognitive Abilities assessment. This will be administered at each child’s school by a counselor or designated staff team member.  Assessment days and times will be determined within each building.

February 10: (Grades 1 through Grade 11) Referred students will receive a letter with Cognitive Abilities testing information.

February 17-25: (Grades 6 through Grade 11 only) Referred Middle & High School students will take the Cognitive Abilities test at their current school during the school day during this testing window. This assessment will be administered by teacher or designated staff team member identified by the building principal.

February 27: Note this is different from past school year procedures: (Grades 1 through Grade 5 only) Students will take the Cognitive Abilities test at their home school during the normal school day.

April: (All Students) Test scores from all grades are reviewed by the Multi-disciplinary Selection Committee to determine eligibility.  All families and teachers will be provided the outcome regarding student placement

What identifies a child as Highly Capable?

The Sumner School District uses multiple objective criteria to identify students who are among the most highly capable. Two qualifying areas are considered for the Highly Capable Program.

1st Qualifying Area
Academic Achievement- Measurement of Academic Progress (MAP)

2nd Qualifying Area
Aptitude- Cognitive Abilities Test (cogAT)

green star bullet 2015-2016 Highly Capable MAP Target Scores

If you have questions about the program, qualification criteria, or selection process, please contact Tari Littlefield at (253) 891-6035.


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