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High Ability

High Ability Grades 1 through 6

Gifted and high ability programming have historically been designed with the intent of supporting students who exhibit extraordinary performance capabilities in an intellectual, creative, or artistic area. Programs, such as Lawrence Township High Ability, have provided enrichment and structures for accelerated learning to students who qualify at the elementary level.

We have four district sites for our high ability programming - Amy Beverland and Oaklandon on the east side of the district and Mary Castle and Crestview on the west side of the district. High ability programming at Mary Castle and Oaklandon also offer a bilingual model. Students' home addresses are used to determine which site they will attend. Bus transportation will be provided to and from the home address to the high ability school assigned.

Explanation of Tests

Identifying High Ability Students

  • All students in Kindergarten and 2nd grade will be tested each year.
  • Families can request testing in grades 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5. 

The following three items are considered for identification:*

* We also consider teacher recommendations and grades as additional data points. 

Measuring Academic Achievement

Measuring Cognitive Potential Measuring Characteristics of Giftedness
Normative data from the district progress monitoring assessment is used to identify high academic achievement for students in reading or math. The assessment is an adaptive test that provides progress scores as well as national norms. 


Students in grades K and 2 will take a CogAT screener.  Scores at or above the 77th percentile on the CogAT screener will qualify for the full CogAT.

The Kingore Observation Inventory (KOI) will be given to all students in grades K and 2.  The KOI allows teachers to gather data through specific planned experiences.  These experiences are high-level, open-ended activities that have proved responsive to under-represented populations in demonstrating gifted potential. Scores are given on a 4 point rubric.

Click here for information about reading your CogAT Score reports.
Click here for CogAT FAQ's

MSDLT High Ability Program – Schedule for Testing – 2023-24 

November 13 – December 1, 2023
CogAT Screener and first Planned Experience given to all MSDLT Kindergarten & 2nd-Grade students

December 4, 2023 – January 1. 2023
Registration window for students in grades Kindergarten through Grade 5, students that reside in the district, but are not currently attending MSDLT schools. Click here to register for testing.  

January 2,  2024 – January 20 , 2024
Registration window for parent requests for high ability testing for students in grades 1, 3, 4 and 5 that are currently attending MSDLT schools.

*If you are interested in requesting testing for your student, please register here. Testing will take place in the student’s home school during school hours.  

January 11, 2024– January 31, 2024
Second planned experience given to all Kindergarten and 2nd-grade students; Full CogAT given to students who score at/above the 77th percentile rank on the CogAT screener

January 16, 2024
Full CogAT given to Kindergarten through Grade 2 students that reside in the district, but are not currently attending MSDLT schools, at LECC, 3 – 6pm

March 11, 2024 – March 29, 2024
Window to request appeals. 

April 5, 2023 
Appeals Testing at LECC, 3 – 4pm


Secondary Schools Honors Courses

Students in grades 7 and 8 who are achieving at advanced levels will be scheduled into Pre-AP classes for Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies. In addition, Algebra I, Honors Biology, French I, Spanish I & II are all available for high school credit. Students in grades 9-12 who are achieving at advanced levels will be scheduled into Honors, AP, IB, and dual credit courses. All advanced courses are the secondary level are open to all students pending availability. 

Moving into the MSD of Lawrence Township

Families of students who enroll in MSD of Lawrence Township, whose child/children have been in high ability classes in other school districts, must either provide documentation of their High Ability status. If unable to provide the appropriate data, the student will need to be tested by Lawrence Township administrators to assure that placement in High Ability is the most appropriate placement.

Parent & Caregiver Resources


For more information, please contact:

Mr. Troy Knoderer
Chief Academic Officer
(317) 423-8327
(Contact Troy Knoderer)