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GATE Frequently Asked Questions

What does the term GATE mean?
California uses the acronym to stand for Gifted and Talented Education. GATE funds are received from the state after approval of an application and plan for the program's implementation in their specific district.

My Child Has Already Taken An IQ Test; Can That Be Used For Placement in FUSD?
No. FUSD uses multiple measures for placement. All students who are identified as potentially gifted by FUSD are fairly evaluated using the same criteria.

If your child has qualified for a gifted program in a previous school district, please provide proof of enrollment at the time you register.
To be placed in FUSD's GATE program, we will need to evaluate the scores and testing criteria used to place your child. It would be extremely helpful to get a copy of this information before you leave the district. Waiting for your previous district to forward records will delay possible placement. If the criteria used to place your child does not match that of FUSDs or, cannot be located, your child may be provisionally placed and tested in the spring.

What is the Naglieri Non-Verbal Ability Test? (NNAT)
The Naglieri test is a non-verbal ability test, which measures ability without the requirement of reading, writing, or speaking. The test focuses on reasoning and problem-solving skills. The test is considered ideal for those with limited English proficiency, as such is considered cultural-fair.

When can my child take the Naglieri Test?
The student must be the second grade to test. The Fontana Unified School District will conduct a mass testing of all second grade students in the spring. Parents will receive information from their school sites prior to testing. You may complete an "opt-out" letter if you do not wish to have your second grade child tested. Students in grades three and above are tested based on teacher and parent referral.

How long does the Naglieri test take?
In order to promote the fairest assessment of all students, the Naglieri is a timed test of thirty minutes.

Does the Naglieri test only visual skills? What about a child with excellent verbal skills?
All intelligence tests require some measure of visual skill as well as verbal skill. The Naglieri, although considered a non-verbal ability instrument, contains many elements necessary in word usage, abstract reasoning skills and language acquisition. Results have shown that with the Naglieri gifted traits are being recognized in students with strong verbal skills as well as the nonverbal child.

Is there a breakdown of scores from the Naglieri Test?
The Naglieri provides one overall score stated in a percentile.

Why is a percentile score given and not an IQ score?
Although the Naglieri Test is an intelligence test, it has been decided that only the percentile score would be reported. Frequently, too much emphasis is placed on IQ scores. With the use of the percentile score, there is less pressure placed on the student. Percentiles are not the same as percent correct. Percentile is an age-based or grade-based score indicating the percent of the norm group of students tested who scored less than the student. 85th percentile means only that 85 percent of students tested scored lower than the subject, not that the subject got 85% of the questions correct. Percentile scores are easily correlated to standard or IQ scores. For large populations, percentiles are an easy way to compare one child to his age / grade peers.

Is it possible to see my child's test results?
The answer sheet where the child placed his/her answers is basically a form with numbers on it. Seeing it would give no insight into the results of the test.

What scores certify a student for the Gifted/Talented Program?
The Naglieri is one of the multiple measures used to identify students. A score in the 98th percentile or above would indicate the child may be highly gifted.

Does My Child Need To Be In GATE To Qualify For High School AP Courses?
No. Students do not need to be GATE qualified to enroll in AP courses. For specific criteria for AP classes, please contact your child's school.

What is a GATE cluster?
A group of identified students that make up no more than 1/3 of the class, (4-6 students in grade 3 and 5-10 students in grades 4-8), are clustered in the classroom of a GATE-identified teacher. The other students in that class are of mixed ability. For the gifted students, the advantages are that they feel more comfortable when there are other students just like them in the class. They are more likely to choose more challenging tasks when other students will also be eligible.

What is a special day class?
A special day class is defined as any regular or combination grade level classroom where 100% of the students are identified as GATE.

If my child is in GATE will they receive a different curriculum?
No. By law, all students receive their appropriate grade-level curriculum based on state standards; however, a GATE student can expect to be challenged in the curriculum through differentiated instruction.

What is differentiation?
Differentiation is done through variations in classroom projects and/or activities which allow students more than one possible outcome to satisfactorily complete an assignment. Projects/ activities may show depth, acceleration, novelty and complexity. A student that is identified as GATE can expect to receive qualitatively differentiated instruction in the classroom for at least 200 minutes per week. The delivery of the curriculum is determined through evaluation of individual student needs, lesson objectives and applicable teaching strategies. The most common forms of differentiation are compacting (testing out), interest/learning centers, tiered multi-level) assignments, flexible skills grouping, high level questioning, and independent projects.

How can I tell if my child is receiving differentiated instruction?
First, talk to your student. Ask them to describe the class structure and the various assignments. Cluster teachers weave strategies throughout their lessons and do not make announcements that particular activities are differentiated. Students often expect a different curriculum and may be unaware that they are receiving differentiation. As a parent, understanding the most common forms of differentiation is important when discussing school work with your student. Second, talk to the teacher. If after speaking with your student you still have questions, the teacher will be able to give you the specific details of what is being provided.

Are GATE teachers specially trained?
Teachers must fulfill differentiated needs of a wide variety of GATE students with common intellectual ability but with varying levels of academic, social and emotional development. Each is required to be in training or hold a certificate in gifted education. Ongoing training is provided through staff development to refine knowledge, skills, and abilities to work successfully with GATE students.  

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