Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program
What is the Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program?
Katy ISD offers Gifted and Talented programs to students in Kindergarten through 12th grade. The Kindergarten through fifth grade program, Challenge, is based on the General Intellectual Abilities model. Sixth through twelfth grade students use the Specific Subject Matter Aptitude model.
The same process for referral and testing is used for both programs. All kindergartners are screened for the Gifted Program. Other students can be referred for screening by their parents or teachers once per year.
Eligibility for the Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program
Screening is done using both qualitative and quantitative data. Screening and testing happens in three phases.
Phase one for the Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program is for all referred and Kindergarten students. During this phase, parents complete a checklist, the students are observed in their classroom, and they take a non-verbal abilities test, the NNAT®. For appeals, the OLSAT® is given. Reading or English language proficiency is not required. The parent checklist can be found at the Katy ISD website.
Phase two is for all students who have at least two scores on the abilities test which meet district target scores. (KISD does not give the exact requirements needed to move on to phase two. However, typically, students need to score in the 98th percentile or higher to be considered for gifted programs.) During phase two, students take an achievement test in reading and math, the IOWA Test®.
Phase three for the Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program is for students who have four positive indicators from phases one and two. (Students who already have five indicators do not need to take the phase three testing and are accepted into the gifted program.) During phase three, students take an intelligence test. This is typically the RIST®.
Testing takes place on campus during the school day, unless a special ability score is needed, which occurs on a case by case basis. If a child is absent during the testing period, they are able to make up the test after they return to school. Parents are notified of placement results via mail.
Testing Mom offers a comprehensive online program with practice test questions, one-on-one expert tutoring sessions, and group classes that cover all the concepts on the RIST.
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Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program for Grades K-5
The program used in K-5th is Challenge. It is a one-day-a-week pull-out program. Beginning in first grade, GT students spend the day in their own classroom working with a teacher who specializes in gifted teaching. Teachers use a high interest advanced curriculum that encourages creative, critical thinking, research, and technology skills. Students also work on individual interest projects.
The Kindergarten program begins in early March. Students spend 60 minutes per week in the Challenge classroom to begin using creative and productive thinking skills.
Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program for Grades 6-12
Students in 6th-12th grade focus on four content areas: English Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies. Content in the classes is differentiated to meet the unique needs of each student. These advanced courses are taught by teachers who specialize in working with gifted students.
Katy ISD Gifted and Talented Program for Grades 7-8
GT Independent Study Electives are available for students in 7th-8th grades and Online Virtual School is offered to students in 10th-12th grades. PACE (Professional Advancement through Career Education) is a mentorship program available to GT seniors. In this program, students work with a mentor and intern with adult professionals to gain career knowledge and experience.
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