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Gifted & Talented

The West New York School District offers a Gifted and Talented (G&T) Program that services children in grades Kindergarten through Eight who have been identified with advanced academic and creative abilities when compared with their chronological peers in the district.

What is the G & T Program?

The curriculum includes a higher level of cognitive and affective concepts and processes delivered by educational specialists in an environment where gifted students spend quality time with other gifted children. Instructional strategies accommodate the differentiated learning styles of the G & T students. The West New York Gifted and Talented Program is structured within the framework of the Joseph Renzulli Enrichment Triad Model. It recognizes the importance of motivating higher levels of interest and learning whereby stressing the multifaceted approach to gifted education.

How are students identified for G & T?

The identification process consists of multiple criteria to determine eligibility to the program. Recommendations are accepted from parents, teachers, and administrators.
Students who demonstrate ability or potential achievement in any of the following areas are considered for testing:

Intelligence testing and testing for divergent thinking are administered dependent on the child's grade level. Parents must give written permission for their child to be tested and to participate in the program if accepted.

What is the expected criterion for students in G & T?

Generally, standardized test scores should be in the 90th percentile in Language Arts, Math and Reading. The student academic record should indicate the grade of "A" or "B" in the major subjects of Reading, Math, Writing, Social Studies and Science. A "C" or better average must be maintained in all other subjects.

What if a child is denied entrance to the program?

If a child is not accepted into the program, the school will continue to keep track of the child's progress and perhaps he/she will be recommended for retesting in the future. Parents receive written notification of non-acceptance.

What is the structure of the G & T program?

The district believes that gifted students need to spend consistent instructional time with other gifted students facilitated by an educational specialist to promote higher order thinking and learning. Every school in the district has a full time teacher who works with the Gifted and Talented students in grades 1-8 several times per week for forty minutes per class dependent on scheduling. Kindergarten students are accepted for testing mid-year.

Who are the G & T Faculty?

PS #1 - Nancy Viana
PS #2 - Jennifer Heady
PS #3 - Amy Cardenas
PS #4 - Connie Flanagan
PS #5 - Johana Zegarra
HLB - Elizabeth Ferrer

What are the responsibilities of the G & T student?

Students are expected to work to their full potential in the G & T classroom. Grades of "A" or "B" in major subjects are expected on the report cards. Students must make up work missed in their regular classrooms. Behavioral problems are not tolerated in the program and will result in a child's removal from the G & T program after one written warning has been issued.

What if a child is put "on probation?"

A student is put "on probation" if their academic grades fall below the accepted limit at which time the student will return to their regular class. If the child's grades improve to meet the G & T criteria, he/she may return to the program at the beginning of the next marking period. Parents receive written notification of the probation.

How is a child readmitted to the program?

In order to be readmitted into the G & T program, a homeroom teacher recommendation must be made and the student will be administered the Slosson or Olsat Test of which he/she must score 120 or better. Parents must give written permission for retesting.

Does all instruction occur only in the school?

No, Learning takes place from field trips, workshops, assemblies, convocations and festivals. Projects and extracurricular group activities are various other avenues often explored.

How are G & T students evaluated?

Students receive a report card grade for each marking period. If needed, a separate progress report can be issued by the teacher.

How can I get more information?

Parents who would like further information about the Gifted & Talented Program should contact Jorge Acosta, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction at (201) 553-4040 x 30012 or email at