Mountain Lakes Public Schools
Gifted and Talented and Enrichment Programs
...Mountains are symbolic of the continual upward striving of all our students. Mountain-climbing involves risk and requires determination,organization and skill. It is thus an appropriate metaphor for academic programs that encourage students to challenge themselves.
P.E.A.K. - The Mountain Lakes Programs for Gifted and Talented and School-wide Enrichment
P.E.A.K. is built upon educational research in the design and delivery of differentiated instruction. The District recognizes that all students have gifts and talents. Therefore, the P.E.A.K. Program offers a variety of enriching educational experiences to help students in grades K-12 discover and develop their unique abilities.
The P.E.A.K. Program derives from the District’s ongoing commitment to two key components:
• strong foundation core curriculum delivered with differentiated instruction, and
• expanded, rigorous opportunities for students to excel academically.
The program of enrichment experiences includes school-wide events, field trips, artists and scholars in residence, mentorships and Cluster Activity Programs. In addition, there is a pull-out program for highly-able students at the elementary level in grades 3 and 4.
Identification Process for K-2 Wildwood Gifted and Talented Students
Identification and program services begin in Kindergarten in Wildwood. Students are assessed for advanced learning attributes using the Renzulli Scales for Rating the Behavioral Characteristics of Superior Students, administered by the Teacher of the Gifted. She also collaborates with classroom grade level teams in order to challenge students with push-in enrichment lessons.
Building–based faculty and administrators work together to ensure that all students are regularly pre-assessed and instructed at the appropriate level within each subject level. This may include compacting curriculum, opportunities for teacher-directed research, or special projects designed to enhance the regular curriculum.
The students in grades one and two should be identified and communicated to teachers no later than October 15th each year. Identification and communication of Kindergarten students should be no later than November 1st.Identification Process for 3rd Grade Gifted and Talented Students
Approximately three percent of our students are identified for an advanced learning consultation service based on standardized testing, teacher input, and overall classroom performance. These students receive specialized assistance in setting specific academic goals from grades 3 - 12.