Gifted Education Philosophy

District Mission Statement

The mission of the Paradise Valley Unified School District is to cultivate, lead and inspire world-class, innovative thinkers and expert communicators through a focus on the relationship between educator and student built around challenging, meaningful and engaging curriculum.

Gifted Education Mission Statement

PV Schools supports the philosophy that giftedness denotes the possession and use of untrained natural abilities (Gagne).  We believe that gifted students’ natural abilities translate to educational needs that require differentiated instructional programming as an integrated part of their regular school day. 

Definition of Gifted Students

PVUSD defines gifted students as those children of lawful school age who show, or have the potential for showing, an exceptional level of performance in one or more areas of expression (National Association for Gifted Children).  In accordance with the AZ State Mandate for Gifted Education, gifted education services are offered to all students who score at or above the 97th percentile on a verbal, quantitative, and/or nonverbal battery of a test included on the Arizona State-Approved Gifted Test List.

Definition of Gifted Education

PVUSD defines gifted education as services and coursework that provide extended learning opportunities focused on the cognitive and affective needs of gifted students.  Gifted Education services in PVUSD are inclusive of all school populations and student demographics, and consist of integrated, differentiated learning experiences provided during the regular school day.  The array of gifted education services in PVUSD incorporates and addresses:

  • Continuity of programming to fit the needs of all gifted students
  • Continual progress to ensure individual academic progress
  • Daily interaction with other gifted students in the content areas
  • Differentiated curriculum and instruction
  • Accelerated pacing in the core content areas
  • Critical thinking, creativity, and problem solving
  • Flexible grouping according to ability levels, learning styles, and areas of interest
  • Attention to gifted students’ social and emotional needs.

PVUSD employs the following personnel to support Gifted Education Services in the District:

  • Gifted Education Specialist at each elementary school
  • Gifted Cluster Teachers at each elementary school
  • Gifted Education Liaison at each middle and high school
  • Self-contained Gifted Program Teachers at the elementary and middle school levels
  • Self-contained Teachers for the Uniquely Gifted Program at the elementary and middle school levels
  • Honors, Advanced Placement, & International Baccalaureate Teachers, K-12
  • Administrative Assistant
  • Gifted Testing Technicians
  • Gifted Cluster Teacher Coach
  • Gifted Program Mentor
  • Gifted Data Technician

 Site-based enrichment provided within the school day varies at the different sites.

Samples include:

  • Digital learning, integrating technology using iPads, iMacs, laptops, digital cameras, and more
  • iPad Labs
  • Fine arts continuum
  • Hands on science in gifted cluster classrooms
  • Hands on Equations-- for study of algebra
  • Whole Brain learning
  • Junior Achievement
  • Science field trips to Catalina
  • Technology-based Stock Market Game

 Site-based after school enrichment varies at the different sites. 

Samples include:

  • Chess clubs
  • Robotics
  • Dance, choreography and musicals
  • Karate and other sports
  • Railroad Investigation class
  • Foreign language instruction using Rosetta Stone
  • Fine arts / PE (in addition to being provided within the school day)

Learn About Gifted Education Scope and Sequence (currently in committee for update)