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Gifted Students

The J.O. Combs Unified School District is committed to identifying students who qualify for placement in the gifted cluster classroom.

Identification of Gifted Students

State approved tests are used to determine gifted qualification. To qualify as gifted, a student must score at the 95th percentile or above on at least one of these test batteries. 

Students currently enrolled in grades K-6th can be tested at their school site by parent request. Students enrolled in 3rd grade will be tested automatically in the spring. 

About the Test

The Cognitive Abilities Test is approved by the State of Arizona Department of Education for identification of gifted students. It is an abilities test measuring a child’s ability to reason in three different areas. Reasoning abilities have substantial correlations with learning and problem solving, both in and out of school. Each level of CogAT offers three test batteries: Verbal (reading), Quantitative (math), and Nonverbal (spatial). Having multiple measures in each domain greatly increases the dependability of the score profile that is reported for each student. Each battery is represented by two or three different reasoning tasks, which are: 




Verbal Classification

Sentence Completion

Verbal Analogies

Quantitative Relations

Number Series

Equation Building

Figure Classification

Figure Analogies

Figure Analysis

Gifted Services

The elementary schools use the cluster model to serve gifted students in grades K-6. In this model several students with similar exceptional learning needs are placed in the same mixed-ability classrooms.  One or two teachers per grade level have a group of gifted students in their classrooms, and those teachers are responsible for providing appropriate differentiation opportunities for their gifted students.  

Testing Information

Testing occurs twice per year. As a screening process, all third graders, unless they decline testing, are tested. This blanket screening of third graders ensures that equity and consideration of all students is given. 

3rd Grade Blanket Testing - TBD

Testing dates for the 2018-2019 school year for students in kindergarten-6th grade are listed below. 

Fall Gifted Testing for Kindergarten – 6th Grade
September 22, 2018
  • Testing sessions will start at 9:00AM and be held at Combs Traditional Academy
  • Permission to test is required 
  • Student may only test one time in a 12-month period

Spring Gifted Testing for Kindergarten – 6th Grade

Referral and Screening
Characteristics common to gifted children to help aide in the recommendation process can be accessed by clicking the link below.   

To request testing for your child complete the Permission to Test form.