New Students to Barrington 220

  • The responses to the following frequently asked questions are designed to assist parents of children who will be entering District 220 and have questions regarding placement in the Extended Program. For lists of available programs and criteria for student identification to participate in the program, please see the Extended Services Handbook and explore the left-hand sidebar for other links.

    How come a child in a former gifted program in another district does not automatically qualify for Extended Services in Barrington District 220? 

    We believe the purpose of the Extended Services Program is to support children with a unique profile of strengths, talents, and/or abilities whose needs exceed the core curriculum in Barrington District 220.

    We support the needs of all students in the district with high aptitude or competence in academics and/or the visual arts who require specialized instruction when compared to peers of their age, experience, and environment. Thus, local norms are utilized. Through a continuum of services, varying levels of challenge are designed to match student needs by differentiated, accelerated, and/or enriched instruction. Program placement is fluid, with appropriate opportunities to move within the continuum to transform student potential into performance.

    Gifted programs are not the same from one district to another. At this time, the state of Illinois does not require districts to have gifted programs. Since funding for these programs varies at the state or federal level, districts must rely on local funds if they choose to offer programs. Districts structure their gifted programs to meet the needs of their population. 

    A child new to the district may have the potential to participate in extended classes, but his or her new school needs to be sure s/he has the background or prerequisite skills necessary to be successful. For example, a gifted 7th grade math class in one district might cover completely different content than a class with the same name in another district.

    May a child be tested for the Extended Resource Program and/or Extended Self-Contained Program before enrolling in the district? 

    No. We are unable to assess children for the Extended Program unless they are currently enrolled in the district and attending school here. It is important to see how a child responds to the core curriculum before determining if s/he needs an extension of the core curriculum; e.g. Extended Services.

    How is a child new to the district identified for the Extended Services Program? 

    Extended Services placement occurs at two pivotal times of the school year through the Fall Data Review (Gr. 3-8) for new students and the Spring Data Review (Gr. 2-7) for all students.

    Ongoing consideration throughout the year is always an option for students in grades 3-8, if there is teacher evidence that a student’s instructional needs are exceeding the core curriculum. The School Team and the Director of Extended Services will meet to review evidence and student performance. Parents will be notified if a change in placement is recommended.

    *New students to the district in grades 3-8 take early fall assessments in September, which may result in a fall placement in October or November. 


    • New students take the MAP assessment in reading and math...
    • Those students in grades 3, 4, and 6 who score at or above the local 90%ile in reading and/or math on the MAP, move on to the take the CogAT assessment.
    • Students who also score at or above the local 90%ile on the verbal and/or the quantitative battery automatically qualify for Extended Services (SAS score is used in absence of a local norm). Parents will be notified if a change in placement is recommended.
    • Those students in grades 5, 7, and 8 who score at or above the local 90%ile in reading or math on the MAP, will be considered for placement by the School Team and the Director of Extended Services. This team will meet to review the student’s instructional needs, evidence of advanced teacher planning, and the student’s classroom academic performance to determine if a fall placement is appropriate. Parents will be notified if a change in placement is recommended.

    Multiple data points are considered when determining student qualification for Extended Services, as is a student’s instructional need for extended placement. Instructional need must manifest within the classroom, be evidenced through student work, and must be evidenced by an ongoing need for instructional planning by the teacher that is beyond the grade-level core curriculum standards.


    • PHASE I: Automatic Qualification (Placement in the Fall, Grades 3-8)-Placement for the fall (of the following school year) starts with a district data review of all students in grades 2-7 each spring. Winter (November) and spring (March-April) MAP assessments are paired with the most recent CogAT assessment. Local Percentile Rank (LPR) is utilized. Norms change each testing period, for each grade level, based on the time of year (winter and spring).
    • PHASE II: The Spring Review for Potential Qualification- Students who qualify for the Spring Review must engage in additional Performance-Assessment Tasks to determine if placement is appropriate. These are authentic tasks that occur within the extended classroom to determine a student’s readiness. Teachers are also asked to complete a SIGS Behavior Rating Scale to offer their insights about the child’s needs. A Review Committee and the Director of Extended Services convenes to conduct a case-by-case, blind review of the data to determine if a fall placement at the start of the following school year is appropriate.

    Parents should contact the Barrington 220 Director of Extended Services (contact information on web homepage), upon moving into the district. The district registrar can provide forms giving permission to contact staff at your child's previous school.

    If Extended Math is advanced by one grade level in grades 3-5 in Barrington District 220, how can a middle school student qualify?

    A student already in advanced math courses who is entering 6th, 7th, or 8th grade, should share a curriculum overview of his/her math experience with the Director of Extended Services for review. Cumulative records (including a report card), former MAP scores, and the most recent cognitive scores (i.e. CogAT, WISC, Stanford-Binet, etc.) are also helpful.

    In Barrington District 220, Extended Math is accelerated by two grade levels at the end of 9th grade, therefore, making late middle school math placements more rare. The Director of Extended Services contacts the former school (once parent permission is obtained) to verify the child's curricular experience and mastery of skills. At times, new students are also asked to take a special placement assessment to determine middle school math placement and readiness. 

    High school courses are open to all students and do not require a prior Extended Services placement. Parents are encouraged to discuss options with a high school counselor and the content-specific Department Chair to fully understand the course rigor. Upon enrolling in the district, all new students have the option to take a placement test through each of the different content area departments. Parents of new students should contact the high school guidance counselors for more information regarding placement. For course pre-requisites, please see the posted Barrington High School course guide found on the high school website. A myriad of Honors and Advanced Placement (AP) courses are offered at the high school.

    For most, please see FALL DATA Review above regarding early fall assessments for new students to determine if placement is appropriate…

    Are there services available for a child entering 2nd grade who was in a gifted program in another school district? 

    District 220's Extended Resource Program (enrichment and daily replacement for reading and math) starts in 3rd grade. Teachers of grades K-2 differentiate as needed for their high ability students. Extended Resource teachers at each school and the district Director of Extended Services support classroom teachers with in-class differentiation through consultation and sharing of materials. Parents should share information with their child's teacher regarding participation in the gifted program in the child's previous school. 

    If there is a need to consider full grade-acceleration, the Director of Extended Services works with the School Team/MTSS Team and Program Psychologist to initiate a review. Please contact the director, if you want to initiate this process.