GATE Program

night light
GATE students made nightlights

The goal of the GATE program is to meet the academic and social needs of highly gifted learners. These learners are children whose academic abilities indicate the need for in-depth, complex and rigorous curriculum and instruction beyond that which can be provided in the gifted cluster groupings that are currently in place. Unlike clustering, which includes students of various abilities, the classes at GATE include only highly gifted learners.

The GATE program provides students with a highly challenging instructional program which meets and exceeds the Stillwater Area Public Schools’ academic standards. Differentiation in the depth, breadth, and pace of instruction with an emphasis on higher level thinking skills is utilized to meet the needs of advanced learners.  

Program Details

Beginning in 2017-2018, GATE will be located at Stillwater Middle School, which will allow for expanded opportunities for students. We’ve designed a GATE program that will provide a sheltered experience for fourth and fifth graders - similar to what they’ve known at Oak Park. Our sixth graders will be clustered together in houses and in core classes, with access to support from a GATE teacher for English Language Arts and Science. A specialized GATE math class will also be provided to our sixth grade students.

In addition, we’ve designed gifted and talented services for our 7th and 8th grade students. Much like sixth grade, our 7th and 8th students will be clustered for core classes, and a specialized “push-in or pull-out” math class taught by a GATE teacher will be provided to keep them on track with their individualized learning needs.

Learn more about what to expect for next year.

View the GATE 2017-2018 Program presentation (shared with school board Feb. 9, 2017)

Transportation will be provided beginning 2017 and school hours will be 7:50 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. This program is an optional alternate educational setting available to students who meet eligibility criteria.

Entrance Criteria

GATE eligibility will be determined by a District Identification Team following established Eligibility Criteria. Students will be accepted beginning with the highest scores and will be added as space allows. The Cognitive Abilities Test is given in November. 

Full scale scores from outside IQ tests will be considered if they are completed by a professional included on this list.

Application Process

If you are a parent of a child who meets eligibility criteria and is currently attending a Stillwater Area Public School, you may apply using the GATE Alternate School Enrollment form. See below.

If you are a parent of a child who meets eligibility criteria and is not currently attending a District 834 school, you may apply using the Application Form for Out-of-District Students. See below.


2017-2018 Important Dates and Deadlines

Nov. 10: Deadline for parents and teachers to request CogAT testing for grades 4 and 5    students

Nov. 13-22: CogAT testing window for all 3rd grade and referred students in grades 4 and 5

Dec. 8: Families notified of GATE invitation and Cluster qualification

Dec. 15: Intent to Return forms due (current GATE students)

Dec. 20: GATE applications due

Jan. 3: Notify families of acceptance or wait list to GATE.

Jan. 8: Meeting for prospective GATE parents.  6-7pm at Stillwater Middle School

Jan. 9: Prospective student visit at GATE. 12:00-1:30

Jan. 19: Deadline to commit to GATE

Jan. 22: Invitations to wait list families

Jan. 29: Final deadline for wait list families to commit to GATE.

Feb. 12: New Cluster Parent Meeting: 6-7pm Stillwater Middle School