The Mercer Island School District is focused on successfully preparing all students for their future. The Mercer Island Highly Capable Program is designed to meet the academic needs of our students in grades three through eight who fall generally in the top 2 percentiles for cognitive aptitude, the top 10 percentiles academically, and who demonstrate exceptional ingenuity.
In accordance with the philosophy to develop the special abilities of each student, the Mercer Island School District offers appropriate instructional programs to meet the needs of exceptionally gifted and talented students. Our Highly Capable Program curriculum, instruction and assessment practices are designed to meet the following objectives:
Expansion of academic attainments and intellectual skills;
Stimulation of intellectual curiosity, independence and responsibility;
Development of a positive attitude toward self and others; and
Development of originality and creativity.
The Mercer Island School District Highly Capable Program develops the special abilities of the highly capable student by fostering academic excellence through the challenges of accelerated, compacted, integrated and enriched curriculum, as well as through the stimulation of working with highly capable peers. The Highly Capable Program is designed to recognize that, despite high intellectual ability, students differ in levels of organizational ability, personal maturity, academic competence, values and family background.
Highly Capable Program teachers work as a team sharing expertise and knowledge to coordinate and continually refine the curriculum.
To provide enriched and accelerated academic opportunities with an emphasis on the development of higher level thinking skills including application, analysis, synthesis and evaluation of content and concepts.
To offer a rigorous academic curriculum that is at least one year above grade level in math and reading at the elementary level so as to appropriately challenge and motivate students to excel.
To offer an environment where highly capable students are encouraged to reach their full potential.
To address the social and emotional needs of highly capable students through teacher support, peer interaction, and by fostering a sense of community.
To prepare students for future contributions to society and to encourage life-long learning.
The Elementary Highly Capable Program is self-contained in grades three through five at West Mercer Elementary and grade three and four at Lakeridge Elementary. Students in the Highly Capable Program remain with their class throughout the day and move to their elective studies PE, art, music, and library with their class. The Highly Capable Program at Islander Middle School focuses on science, English and social science. All other content areas are integrated with the general population of students. We continue to provide services to our highly capable students in high school through honors and AP courses which are available to all students. This continuum of service provides appropriate support and accommodation for all highly capable students from identification to graduation.
All second grade students and nominated third through seventh grade students are tested for eligibility. Those who meet the criteria are offered placement into our Highly Capable Program for the following year. The nomination timeline for the 2014-2015 school year is listed below. If you have any questions, you may contact Fred Rundle, 206-230-6336 or Jan Kentnor, 206-230-6336.
For more detailed information please see the following documents: