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Jersey City Public Schools Gifted & Talented Programs

What are the Jersey City Public Schools Gifted & Talented Programs?

The Jersey City Public Schools’ Gifted & Talented Program provides students with extraordinary gifts & talents in one or more content areas with access to educational experiences that help allow them to realize their potential. Programs are designed to challenge and support gifted students with needs-based services.

Enrichment Services

Services provided by the Jersey City Public Schools program include magnet programs, pull-out programs, specialized content courses, advanced classes, grouping strategies, accelerated learning, differentiated curriculum, and classroom instruction.

Local school districts use various measures to identify students as gifted, including but not limited to:

  1. Achievement test scores
  2. Grades
  3. Student performance or products
  4. Intelligence testing
  5. Parent, student, and/or teacher recommendations

Multiple programs are available to gifted students in grades K-12. The HOPE program provides a challenging, rigorous learning program to students in grades 3-8, designed to provide students with an accelerated and enriched curriculum to develop critical and creative thinking skills and distinguished, unique work products. HOPE classes involve a faster pace and innovative, interdisciplinary, and project-based practices that match standard educational goals.

Jersey City Public Schools’ Accelerated Enrichment Program (AEP) provides students with advanced, rigorous learning opportunities, as well as supplementary counseling, tutoring, and family services for students in grades 6-8. After completing the 3-year middle school program, graduates of the 8th grade will be able to participate in 9th-grade honors courses, eligible for AP classes. The AEP curriculum is a fast-paced, interdisciplinary, and innovative program for students in grades 6-8.

Eligibility for the Jersey City Public Schools Gifted & Talented Programs

K-12 students in Jersey City Public Schools are identified for gifted & talented educational services. District boards of education identify students in grades K-12 through measures other than standardized assessments, including those listed above, which are administered beginning at grade three.

Students are assessed as eligible for the HOPE program beginning in mid-April of each school year using the Scoring Guide and Qualification forms. Students are typically well-positioned to qualify for the program based on whether they have received high grades, demonstrated successful study and work habits, completed assignments fully and promptly, demonstrated strong self-management, punctuality and good attendance. Students are admitted if they meet or exceed the cut-off score.

Jersey City Public Schools’ Accelerated Enrichment Program serves roughly 900 students in grades 6-8. Students typically take the OLSAT in 5th grade–the same assessment used for admissions to the Infinity Institute which, with the AEP, constitutes the district’s two magnet middle school programs. The AEP is hosted in two locations: Academy I and MS #4. Admissions to the AEP requires administration of the Otis-Lennon School Ability Test (OLSAT), a multiple-choice assessment that measures reasoning skills with several different types of verbal, non-verbal, figural, and quantitative reasoning questions. Students must also take the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) test. Applications for the AEP are evaluated on a points system with an approximate cutoff store 65-72:

  • OLSAT score: 40-50 points
  • PARCC score: 30 points
  • Student’s report card: 30 points
  • Teacher Recommendations and Attendance: 15 points from
  • Personal essay: 5 points

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