Frequently Asked Questions about GATE
- Should your Child be Evaluated for GATE Placement?
- What tests are given to evaluate my child for GATE placement?
- What scores would identify my child for GATE placement?
- May my 4th grader be tested?
- What about achievement scores? My child scored very high on the California standardized achievement tests and has high report card grades. Doesn't’t this qualify him for GATE?
- How long does it take to get the results of GATE evaluation?
- My child was not GATE identified last year. When can she be re-evaluated?
- How are the results of GATE evaluation communicated to parents and schools?
- Will my elementary school child need to be re-evaluated upon entering middle school or high school?
- If a student is identified for the GATE program but does not choose to participate, is the identification status lost?
- Is private intelligence testing accepted for GATE identification?
- My child attended a private school last year. Should he be in a GATE class?
- My child was GATE identified in another school district. Will she be GATE identified in PUSD?
1. Should your child be evaluated for GATE placement?
The following guidelines may be helpful in determining whether or not your child should be evaluated:
- Students who obtain overall extremely high scores on standardized achievement tests (98th-99th percentiles) should be evaluated.
- Students who obtain overall high scores on standardized achievement tests (90th-97th percentiles) may be evaluated, especially when also possessing many of the characteristics listed on this site (see link below).
- Students who achieve at lower levels, but possess many or most of the characteristics listed on this site should be evaluated.
2. What tests are given to evaluate my child for GATE placement?
The district utilizes the Otis-Lennon School Ability test (OLSAT) for most students. The Naglieri Non-Verbal Ability test (NNAT) is utilized for students who are English Language Learners. The district does not utilize Stanford-9 or other achievement test scores, nor does it utilize report card grades when considering students for GATE placement.
3. What scores would identify my child for GATE placement?
A total OLSAT or NNAT score at the 99th percentile would automatically identify a student for GATE placement. Total scores between the 95th and 99th percentiles may identify students for placement, however other information from the parent and teacher questionnaires is necessary to determine final identification status.
4. May my 4th grader be tested?
All students are eligible to be tested and evaluated, beginning in grade 2 and through grade 7.
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5. What about achievement scores? My child scored very high on the California standardized achievement tests and has high report card grades. Doesn't’t this qualify him for GATE?
Gifted students are often also high achievers, but not always. Conversely, students who do very well on achievement tests and report cards are not always cognitively gifted. The district makes a distinction between high achievement and exceptional aptitude/ability and desires to ensure services to ensure that gifted students achieve at levels commensurate with their ability. Some very high achievers are being challenged and growing academically in their current classroom environments and do not require GATE services.
6. How long does it take to get the results of GATE evaluation?
Depending upon the availability of all the necessary information and the length of processing time for the test scoring services, the results of GATE evaluation should be available to parents within six weeks of the time a student takes the aptitude test.
7. My child was not GATE identified last year. When can she be re- evaluated?
Students may be re-evaluated for GATE placement after 12 calendar months from the date a student took the aptitude test. Students may test a total of three times in the PUSD.
8. How are the results of GATE evaluation communicated to parents and schools?
Parents are notified through a letter stating the results of GATE evaluation. Each school site is provided with a list of newly identified GATE students. Parents of identified GATE students do not need to contact the school for placement, but do need to submit a signed consent form (included with the results letter) in order for their child to participate in the GATE program.
9. Will my elementary school child need to be re-evaluated upon entering middle school or high school?
No, once a child is identified for GATE, the designation remains through grade 12.
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10. If a student is identified for the GATE program but does not choose to participate, is the identification status lost?
Placement of GATE identified students is recommended, however, students who do not participate for a period of time do not lose their identification status.
11. Is private intelligence testing accepted for GATE identification?
We are unable to accept private testing results. Equal access to all services is necessary. Only a score from a recognized standardized aptitude test administered through a school district, or individual aptitude scores from a test completed by a school district psychologist, are acceptable.
12. My child attended a private school last year. Should he be in a GATE class?
Attendance at a private school does not necessarily mean that a student is cognitively gifted. Most students transferring from private schools will need to be evaluated for GATE after enrolling in a PUSD school.
13. My child was GATE identified in another school district. Will she be GATE identified in PUSD?
Please enroll your child at the appropriate school and indicate that s/he was GATE identified in that district. If you have aptitude test score data available, please provide it to the school, so that your child may be placed in a GATE cluster classroom. You and your child's new teacher will each be asked to complete questionnaires about your child's attributes. A final determination will then be made at the district level regarding permanent GATE placement. Students who are not permanently identified may be re-tested at the next district testing cycle.