Project PLUS (Program for Learning and Unified Studies)
Project PLUS (6-8) with Mathematics Acceleration: Project PLUS is a self-contained program that features access to services in Mathematics/Science/Technology, as well as the Humanities. Students in the Project PLUS program will have mathematics content accelerated one full year. Acceleration is the practice of allowing a student to move through learning material in a content area prior to the prescribed timeframe based upon early mastery. Students will be taking Pre-Algebra in sixth grade, Algebra in seventh grade, and Geometry in eighth grade.
Project PLUS Identification
- Step 1: Test score nomination: Initial screening of students based upon grade level NWEA test scores. These assessments will determine the first group of students to qualify for further review by the screening committee.
- Step 2: Teacher nomination: Teachers may nominate students who display characteristics of giftedness that are not easily determined by tests. These teacher-nominated students are then accepted for further review.
Please note: Students nominated by test score nominations and teacher nominations for further screening will be notified via mail in the spring.
- Step 3: Alternate Pathways (Parent Nominations): If a child is not nominated in Step 1 or 2, parents may also nominate their child for further screening regardless of whether or not they have met initial criteria or have been nominated by their child’s teacher. Written parent nominations will be accepted at the conclusion of Step 1 and 2. If your child has been nominated through test scores or teacher nomination, a parent nomination should not be completed. See Parent Nomination Guidelines for more information.
- Step 4: Special Nominations: A teacher from a previous year can nominate a student who has not yet been nominated through another manner. In addition, resource/special area teachers can also make recommend-dations based upon their own experiences.
Please note: Teachers nominating students for further screening in steps 2 & 4 must complete a GATES checklist (Gifted and Talented Evaluation Scales) form and forward it to their building’s administration, who will, in turn, forward the form to a Gifted and Talented Supervisor. These GATES checklists can be obtained through the main office.
Student recommendations for screening in steps 1-4 do not provide automatic admission into the program. Nominated students will then be reviewed by a screening committee, which will then make a selection decision.
- Step 5: Data Gathering, Analysis, and Decision Making: This step is applicable to all nominated students. Once all pertinent data is collected and analyzed, the screening committee will determine a student’s qualifications regarding participation in Project PLUS. Students who meet the established criteria will be notified in June.
Data used in the screening process is gathered from the following sources:
- NWEA testing
- GATES – Gifted and Talented Evaluation Scales (completed by teacher)
- Most recent standardized achievement test scores (grades 3-5)
Entrance into Project PLUS for Current Fifth Grade Students
As a result of the initial screening process, all nominated students will be asked to complete an additional assessment, the SAGES-2 (Screening Assessment for Gifted Elementary and Middle School Students), for placement into Project PLUS. Those students who meet the established entrance criteria and qualify for placement into the Project PLUS program will be notified in August.
Project PLUS Exiting Policy
- In all four content areas, a student must have a combined final average of 84. If a student does not maintain this average, multiple criteria will be reviewed to determine appropriate placement.
- If a student in the program has a final average in one or more content area of a 70 or below, multiple criteria will be reviewed to determine appropriate placement.
Multiple criteria will be reviewed and shared with parents, teachers, and administrators in order to determine appropriate placement.
Parent Nomination Guidelines for PLUS
If a parent/guardian decides to nominate his/her child, a letter of nomination must include the following:
- Student Name
- School and Grade
- Homeroom Teacher
- Parent/Guardian(s) Name
- Address and Telephone Number
The content of the letter must include:
- Information about your child’s personal qualities that you believe are associated with exceptionality and what has made you realize that your child is exceptionally able.
- Learning/behavioral characteristics of your child associated with general intellectual ability.
A parent or guardian does not have to nominate his/her child for further screening if he/she is nominated by test scores and/or teacher recommendation. Notification of these nominated students will be received in the spring.