Fall 2016, Allen ISD will be expanding academic opportunities for elementary students with the opening of a Gifted and Talented Education Academy. The academy referred to as GATE will open in a portion of the Vaughan Elementary School campus.
AISD conducted a survey of families whose children were already enrolled in GT classes showed that parents were interested in a full-time academy approach at a separate facility in Allen. The Board of Trustees approved the concept and authorized funding for the 2016-2017 program this past month.
- All students in grades K-4 who are currently enrolled in Allen ISD GT programs will be eligible to apply for admission into the new GATE Academy. The program is expected to serve 225 students in the first year, will set aside a specific number of seats per grade level which will be based on the campus percentage of the total AISD GT population in each grade level. Those seats will be filled through a lottery process for eligible GT students across the school district.
- The program will serve students in grades 1-5 in 2016-2017 and a sixth grade component will be added the following year. Students will be part of Vaughan Elementary School while attending the GATE Academy. Ten teachers will staff the program in year one with an additional GT instructional specialist.
- Elementary GT programs at the other sixteen campuses will continue with the same curriculum and schedule they have followed this past year. Enrollment in the GATE Academy will be voluntary, transportation will be provided and there will not be an additional cost to attend the program.
- Academically, the GATE Academy will follow the same TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) curriculum, but will incorporate gifted education models and frameworks throughout the year.
- “The GATE Academy has been on our radar for some time and was also part of the district’s most recent strategic plan, according to Dr. Lance Hindt, superintendent of schools. “I believe the academy is an excellent way for the school district to expand its offerings for gifted students and retain the quality GT programs we already have in place.”
The GATE Academy application process will begin in late February and continue through mid-March. The lottery selection will be held immediately after the application process and parents will be notified of student selection by the end of March
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