Colorado House Bill 1021 provides the legislation necessary to allow highly advanced gifted students who are age four by October 1st to begin kindergarten, or age five by October 1st to begin first grade, if it's found that the student qualifies as both highly gifted and developmentally ready to begin school early. Please note that this option pertains to a small percentage of gifted students who score in the top 2% on both achievement and cognitive tests and require grade level acceleration. The early access process includes a portfolio and interview stage, and if appropriate, the administration of achievement and cognitive assessments.
Parents who are interested in the early access option, need to download and complete the portfolio components (found on the identification page of this website) and submit them to the district gifted and talented department by emailing Kim Hamilton, Director of Gifted Education.
"Highly Advanced Gifted Child" means a gifted child whose body of evidence demonstrates a profile of exceptional ability or potential compared to same-age gifted children. To meet the needs of highly advanced development, early access to educational services may be considered as a special provision. For purposes of early access into kindergarten or first grade, the highly advanced gifted child exhibits exceptional ability and potential for accomplishment in cognitive process and academic areas. The Colorado Department of Education's list of guidelines regarding this process notes that "early access shall not be an acceleration pattern recommended for the majority of age 4 or age 5 gifted children who will benefit from preschool gifted programming that responds to the strength area. The purpose of early access is to identify and serve the few highly advanced gifted children who require comprehensive academic acceleration."
Parents may appeal a decision by asking for the reconsideration of the body of evidence using the Dispute Form below. Parents should submit a letter to the Principal and/or GT Director outlining the nature of the concern, and with supporting documentation attached. The parent must provide evidence that the child‘s knowledge, skills, and abilities are superior to age and grade level peers. Testing from an outside source will be considered, but RFSD is not responsible for any costs incurred if a parent chooses to obtain information this way. The Principal and/or the Director of Gifted Education will convene a meeting with the parent/guardian, and the appeal committee to review the appeal request. The Principal will issue a written final decision within 30 days of the appeal. This written notice will include the reason(s) for the decision. The decision of the appeal committee is final.
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