Gifted Education Program

Cumberland Valley’s Gifted Education Program

What is gifted education?

The federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act defines gifted and talented students as “Students, children, or youth who give evidence of high achievement capability in areas such as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services and activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities.” [Title IX, Part A, Definition 22. (2002)]. Gifted Education then may be best defined as the continuum of programs, services and interventions designed to meet these distinct academic needs. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, these services will provide the following opportunities: acceleration, enrichment and individualization, in which instruction is matched to the distinct is matched specifically to the student’s achievement, ability and interests. This definition is consistent with our service platform which uses the ongoing assessment of present levels of educational performance to inform and individualize instruction and intervention.

What is gifted education at Cumberland Valley?

In the Elementary Schools we have created classrooms for high-achieving students in grades 3-5 taught in a six-day cycle which has allowed us to provide one period of enrichment for students each day.


At the Middle School level, we have enriched offerings to include Math, English and Social Studies with 8th grade Social Studies as a Pre-AP course. While all Middle School students have a short introduction course to Spanish, French, German and Latin, a full year World Language course (Spanish, French, and German) is offered to our high-achieving students beginning in 7th grade.

At the High School, we offer 27 AP courses, an International Baccalaureate Degree Program and offer a varied curricula to meet the strengths of high achieving students. Our High School students have also engaged in academic competitions, community leadership opportunities, self-directed studies as well as career development and social/emotional learning opportunities. 

What is Cumberland Valley’s philosophy and vision for gifted education?

Ø All students should be challenged at their appropriate instructional level

Ø Accurate present level determination is the first step in delivering appropriate instruction and intervention

Ø All students should have access to a cascade of services to include accelerated/advanced coursework and content/grade-level acceleration. Students whose needs cannot be met by our regular education offerings will be challenged through other specially designed instruction as determined by the GIEP Team.

Ø Advanced coursework, including grouped classrooms, enriched courses at the Middle Schools as well as Honors, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate at the High School constitute a significant component of gifted education


Ø Enrichment at all educational levels should include the development of the following skills: creativity, technology, leadership, metacognition and critical thinking


Ø The identification of gifted students should be predicated on multiple criteria to ensure the inclusion of students with unique gifts


Ø Professional development faculty, staff and administration is the vehicle for building organizational capacity to meet the needs of gifted students



What are the goals, and specific objectives for CV’s gifted education program?

Ø Develop a comprehensive and exemplary regular education program which allows all students to maximize their distinct gifts and abilities within a rigorous educational context


Ø Deliver rigorous and meaningful coursework at all educational levels


Ø Facilitate appropriate enrichment, intervention and specially designed instruction as determined by present level data analysis by the GIEP Team


Ø Actively seek the identification and assessment of students who may be in need of gifted services


Ø Commit time and resources to ongoing Professional Development for all staff that facilitate the delivery of gifted services


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