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    Highly Capable and Advanced Learning Services

    All schools within Seattle Public Schools are committed to providing quality instruction designed to meet the academic, social, emotional and behavioral needs of each and every student. For students whose abilities, talents and potential for accomplishment are so advanced they require special provisions to meet their educational needs, each school develops a plan for advanced teaching and learning as part of the annual school Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP) process.

    Services designed to meet the needs of Advanced Learners

    Highly Capable (HC) Services/Opportunities for eligible students in grades K-12 provide differentiated practices unique to each building. Differentiated practices include but are not limited to modification of outcomes, adjusted pacing, problem-based learning, project learning, and flexible/fluid grouping of students for one or more subjects, and enhanced curricula. Services for students determined as eligible for Highly Capable (HC) are provided in neighborhood schools as well as in regional Highly Capable Pathway Schools (also known as Highly Capable Cohorts, HCC Schools). Read more about Highly Capable Services.

    Advanced Learning (AL) Services, for students in grades 1-8 who demonstrate high academic achievement, but who do not meet the definition of Highly Capable, provides enhanced curriculum in reading/ELA and math through a platform of differentiation strategies unique to each building. Differentiated practices include but are not limited to modification of outcomes, adjusted pacing, problem-based learning, project learning, and flexible/fluid grouping of students for one or more subjects, and acceleration. These strategies are described in each school’s Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP). Read more about K-8 Advanced Learning Services and Opportunities.

    Incoming kindergarten students: Read more about Early Entrance to Kindergarten (EEK).

    Students in 6th through 12th gradeRead more about Highly Capable and Advanced Learning in Secondary Schools.

    Note to families new to Seattle Public Schools: If your child is not currently enrolled in Seattle Public Schools, you must submit a complete enrollment registration first. Read more about enrolling your student in Seattle Public Schools.

    Identification, Testing and Eligibility Process

    Students demonstrating an exceptional ability to learn and reason beyond their same-age classmates, are identified by parents, teachers, other staff, or community members and referred by their parents to participate in the eligibility evaluation process. Delivery of advanced learning services includes students with disabilities (twice-exceptional students) and students with exceptional abilities or potential from all social-economic, ethnic and cultural populations.

    Read more about identifying students for advanced learning opportunities.

    Read more about advanced learning eligibility Criteria.

    Recommendations and Referral

    Recommendations: Upon engaging with a student and observing a child’s approach, style, potential and performance in regard to acquiring new learning, communicating complex concepts or other characteristics of giftedness, teachers, school staff, parents, students and community members may recommend a child for the eligibility evaluation process.

    Referrals: Per the Washington Administrative Code (WAC), only the student's parent or guardian may make an official referral. Read more about referring students for testing.

    Testing and Evaluation

    Students who are referred by a parent or guardian to be considered for Highly Capable (HC) or Advanced Learning (AL) Services participate in testing during the assessment cycle window to determine eligibility. Read more about the testing and evaluation process.

    Exiting Services or Programs

    Students may be exited from Highly Capable Services if the services are no longer appropriate. A meeting of the parent/guardian, teacher, administrator, a representative from the Advanced Learning Office, and the student (at parent/ guardian discretion) shall precede such a service delivery change.

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    Contact Advanced Learning

    Have a question?
    CONTACT US HERE.

    Additional department contacts

    Resources for staff

    MySPS MTSS webpage (requires login)

    Related Links

    Advanced Learning Task Force

    Key Dates

    See our calendar webpage for upcoming dates and general referral and testing windows.

    Advanced Learning Updates