Gifted & Talented Education

The Etiwanda School District GATE process identifies students as Gifted And Talented in grades four through eight. Eligible students in ESD are initially tested for potential GATE identification at the end of their 3rd grade year. Once students are identified as GATE, their designation as such will remain while they are enrolled in the Etiwanda School District. Students entering Etiwanda with a previous GATE identification will be recognized as GATE students.

How does a student qualify for GATE? 
Qualification for GATE is a two part process that includes: student grades and the CogAT exam.

The first step begins with analyzing a child’s classroom grade performance over time in two subject areas: English Language Arts and Math.

Note: In elementary school ELA is three distinct areas (reading, writing, language) each of which is reported by an individual letter grade. In middle school all three areas are combined for a single letter grade.

At the end of the second trimester, the grade point averages for all students in grades 3-7 are analyzed. Students earning a combined GPA of 3.75 or higher for trimesters one and two in the areas of ELA and Math are invited to take the CogAT exam during the concluding weeks of the third trimester. PLEASE NOTE – parent permission is required for students to take the CogAT.

The second step for Gate qualification includes the CogAT exam. The Etiwanda School District uses the CogAT form 6 as the assessment tool for identifying exceptional academic abilities. The CogAT is administered at each school site in a group setting – see schedule below. The following levels of the CogAT are administered based upon a child’s grade: 

3rd grade = Level B
4th grade = Level C
5th grade = Level D
6th grade = Level E
7th grade = Level F

Students are assessed in three content domains to ensure a balanced view of the child’s ability. The three areas are:

  • Verbal analysis measures a student’s ability to remember and transform sequences of words to understand them and to make inferences and judgments.

  • Quantitative analysis measures a student’s understanding of quantitative concepts and relationships.

  • Non-verbal analysis measures a student’s ability to reason using pictures and geometric shapes. This section in particular reduces the impact a child’s language may play in their overall score.

Based on CogAT scores, students qualify for GATE if their scores are:

Composite Grade Level Percentile Rank score of 90+
Composite Standard Age Score of 128+, or a Standard Age Score of 128 in any of the three areas assessed


Explanation of CogAT scores.

The Composite Grade Percentile Rank score is a percentile for all three sections.  This number combines all three scores and indicates where your child stands by comparison to other students in the same grade who took the test.  For example, a child’s Composite Grade Percentile Rank score of 98 indicates that this student did better on all three sections combined than 98 percent of the other students.

The Standard Age Score (SAS) is a normalized standard score for each of the three areas assessed.  This score allows educators to compare the level of cognitive development for an individual compared to others in their age group.  Students are grouped by this measurement in one month increments.  The SAS has a mean of 100 and a standard deviation of 16.  Therefore, an SAS score of 100 is average.  A student with an SAS of 130 would have a faster rate and a higher level of development in a particular area than a typical student would have in their same age group.

 Retaking the CogAT:

Students may take the CogAT one additional time in a future year providing that their current GPA is 3.75 or higher for trimesters 1 and 2 and if their previous CogAT scores were in the 85th to 89th percentile rank.

GATE Testing Schedule for the 2019-20 school year:

April 2 Solorio, Falcon Ridge
April 6 DW Long,  West Heritage, Heritage Intermediate
April 7 East Heritage, Lightfoot
April 8 Caryn, Perdew, Day Creek Intermediate
April 9 Windrows, Terra Vista
April 9
Etiwanda Colony
April 10
Summit Intermediate
April 13 Golden, Etiwanda Intermediate
April 15

For more information about the CogAt please follow the link below. 

For more information concerning the GATE identification process, please contact Donna N, Instruction Department, at (909) 803-3148

Additional resources:

California Association for the Gifted (CAG)

Gifted Books