Students are identified for Extended Learning services through a combination of multiple measures. A variety of assessments are used to determine student’s levels of advanced learning need as compared to the student’s peers.

Measures include Iowa Assessments, Cognitive Abilities Test, MAP, STAR 360, FAST, Primary Education Skills, and teacher/parent referrals. Above-level assessments, such as I-Excel and ACT are also occasionally used to support identification. 

Identification constraints include consideration of percent identified. This is typically limited to between 5% - 10% of a grade.

Extended Learning services are optional for identified students. Parents/students may opt out of participation in Extended Learning services.

Criteria include:

  • Annually, all student’s Iowa Assessment scores are screened. Local norms and a wide net concept guide formation of initial screen criteria. For each grade the average National Standard Score (NSS) for each domain of reading, math and science is calculated. The filtering NSS is created by adding 1 standard deviation to the average. In some cases, the top 20% (rather than 1 SD over the average) are added to the screening pool.
  • 3rd grade students are administered the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT). Again, local norms and a 'wide net' concept guide formation of initial screen criteria. Criteria for initial CogAT screening inclusion may be a Standard Age Score of 110 or greater, a Percentile Rank of 80%+, or a Stanine of 7 or greater in any one of the three domains. CogAT is administered at other grades on an as needed basis.
  • Z scores (a statistical measure of how far above the average the score is) for both the Iowa Assessments and CogAT are calculated. 
  • For each grade, student scores at or above the threshold screening score from the Iowa Assessments and CogAT are combined. From these combined metrics students demonstrating the most need for Extended Learning services are identified. 
  • Supporting data from referrals and other assessments are used to support identification decisions. 

Referrals may be made by educators, parents, or community members by completing a Characteristics referral.

A referral or identification prompts the completion of the Need for Service Analysis document.

A group comprised of the Extended Learning & classroom teachers, along with the building principal, with input from student and parent(s) as requested, will meet to determine student eligibility for Extended Learning identification.