2023 Colorado Department of Education Governor's Distinguished Improvement Award

Colorado Department of Education John Irwin School of Excellence award

Blue Ribbon



Healthy Schools


Solution Tree

What do we expect our students to learn?

Core Knowledge Curriculum

The idea behind the Core Knowledge Sequence is simple and powerful: knowledge builds on knowledge. For the sake of academic excellence, greater fairness, and higher literacy, Core Knowledge provides a core curriculum that is coherent, cumulative, and content-specific in order to help children establish strong foundations of knowledge, grade by grade. The Core Knowledge Sequence is a detailed outline of specific content (and skills) taught in English/language arts, history, geography, mathematics, science, and the fine arts.

Academic Environment

The Core Knowledge Sequence details the specific content to be taught in kindergarten through eigth grade in the areas of language arts, history (American and world), geography, music, visual arts, mathematics, and science. The Core Knowledge curriculum exposes children, early on, to interesting and demanding subject matter, and then builds on that, year by year, in a carefully developed sequence manner. For more information about Core Knowledge, please see the Core Knowledge Foundation website at http://www.coreknowledge.org

Mathematics Pathways and Placement

Where are CAS Taught 

Parent FAQ 

A Parent's Guide to K-5 Mathematics 

How will we know they are learning?

5 Dimensions of Teaching and Learning

CMAS website

CMAS Practice tests

CDE SchoolView website

CDE Colorado Academic Standards

Standards and Accountability Prezi Presentation       


Homework provides extra practice of skills and reinforcement of what has been taught at school. Parents are encouraged to work with their children at home to practice skills taught at school. Teachers at each grade will determine the type of homework assignments that are developmentally appropriate for their grade level. Home reading will be an expectation nightly at every grade level. Students enrolled in our Gifted and Talented program may be assigned the higher than average amount of homework.

Homework Guidelines by Grade Level


Report cards are sent home two times a year at the conclusion of each semester.

How will we respond when they don't learn?

MTSS Process Guidebook

How will we respond if they have already mastered it?

Advanced Learning Plans (A.L.P.)

Advanced Learning Plans will be completed after work samples have been collected, learning surveys completed, student reflections written and conferences between the student and teacher have been held.  A.L.P.s will be completed after Thanksgiving.  A new focus for Poudre School District's ALPs, in addition to academic growth, now also include a Social and Emotional growth goal.

District Process

Gifted students are capable of high performance, exceptional production, or exceptional learning behavior by virtue of an area of giftedness.  PSD’s Gifted and Talented program allows for a higher degree of complexity, compacted standards, grouping by readiness/ability, and a focus on problem solving skills.  Students begin GT programming in 3rd grade, the identification process, that aligns with state law, starts in 2nd grade.  Identified students must demonstrate 3 qualifying indicators/scores across 2 bodies of evidence. 

G/T Guidebook

What is the Body of Evidence?


Measure of Academic Progress (MAP)

STAR Assessments

Colorado Measure of Academic Success (CMAS)

Behavior Characteristics

Scales for Identifying Gifted Students (SIGS)

Intellectual Ability/Aptitude

Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT)

Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (KBIT)

Naglieri Nonverbal Abilities Test (NNAT)

Torrance Test of Creative Thinking

Demonstrated Performance


Performance Tasks/Observations


Products and Presentations

Students can be identified in math and/or reading. Each identified GT student with parent input, develops an Advanced Learning Plan (ALP) annually with goals focused on their skills and needs in cooperation with school staff.   At Zach, our identified GT students experience advanced learning opportunities in reading and/or math.  Students also may experience compacted standards in math. 

Gifted and Talented Screening (3 scores needed):

  • All PSD Students
  • MAP (2nd – 5th)
  • CogAT ( 2nd)
  • STAR


  • THREE qualifying indicators
  • Span TWO different areas of the Body of Evidence
  • Cognitive and achievement

Body of Evidence:

  • Achievement scores (MAP & STAR)
  • Intellectual ability/ aptitude (CogAT)
  • Behavior characteristics
  • Demonstrated performances

Qualifying Indicators:

  • 95th percentile or higher on MAP or STAR
  • 95th percentile or higher on CogAT
    • Demonstrated performance
    • Behavioral characteristics

Advanced Learning Plan (ALP)

  • Service providers
  • Context area goals
  • Written annually

ALP Goals:

  • Math and/or Reading goal
  • Social/Emotional goal

Students new to PSD

Students entering PSD from another district in Colorado or from another state or country 
can still qualify for gifted services. If the student has already been receiving gifted services in 
a previous school, the GT Site Coordinator will examine assessments that have already been 
administered, and he/she will determine if the student meets PSD criteria of 3 indicators in 
at least 2 different areas of the body of evidence. It is important to notify the GT Site 
Coordinator at your child’s school as soon as possible so that he/she knows to 
begin the process of reviewing previous assessments for gifted identification in 
PSD. While a student might have received gifted services in another district or state, it is 
still necessary for previous assessments to be reviewed in order to determine if the student 
meets the criteria for PSD. Sometimes other assessments must be administered if previous 
assessments do not meet the district criteria. 
If a student has not been identified previously but shows potential, an educator or parent 
can complete a referral form and submit it to the GT Site Coordinator to begin the process. 
Note: A referral form does not equal identification. It merely begins the process of further 
investigation. A PSD educator must approve all PSD administered assessments. 



PSD does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, veteran status, age or disability in access or admission to, or treatment or employment in, its programs or activities. A lack of English speaking skills will not be a barrier to admission or participation.