Good question….

February 19, 2010 at 12:11 am 6 comments

A reader posted this question – anybody got info?

As the test result letter date draws nearer….I’d love to understand the ’subtests’ on the gifted portion and how it works into acceptances. Is there anyone who REALLY knows?

I know for sure that there are sub-sections of the gifted test (at least on the reading/language portion.)  We don’t see those scores, but CPS has them and somehow uses them to rank kids who have the same test score.  So there are certain sections that have more importance in determining your rank order on the list to get into a program.
The year we got in, a neighbor’s son and my son must have scored the exact same on these subsections because we kept getting the same offers and calls at the exact same time.

So I’m guessing that there could be kids who both score, say a 130, but one child is actually ranked higher among the 130 kids than others.   If you believe the article I posted today about the iffiness of testing 4yo’s, then the value of specific sections (among kids who can barely read!) is pretty comical.

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Interesting Article about Gifted Testing Little Rant about the Teachers’ Union

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. chicago parent  |  February 19, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    One thing to remember that the folks in central office are trying to balance the racial criteria (in past years) and the socio-economic criteria (now). So perhaps in the past this & not a different sub test score was responsible for the coincidence when a neighbor was called at the same time. If you folks are both in the same group & have the same score, they do look at “sub-tests” My understanding is that verbal skills are more highly ranked than other areas.

  • 2. Testing veteran  |  February 19, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    It is frustrating. At one point I looked into signing my child up for classes at Northwestern’s Center for Talent Development. They required a certain test score and from the results I got from CPS it appeared that my child met the threshold. It turns out that they don’t accept CPS because it doesn’t differentiate the Math and Reading portions and try as I might CPS wouldn’t release the results. While the NU program is intriguing they require you to pay over $100.00 for testing since the CPS test wasn’t acceptable and that was enough to turn me off to the whole thing.

  • 3. hopeful  |  February 20, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    Testing veteran,
    I work for CTD at Northwestern and I can tell you, it is worth paying the $100 and whatever other headaches involved. The kids are incredibly bright and motivated and the classes are unbelievably fun and enjoyable. I never liked school as a kid, but I LOVE teaching this program. My daughter is going to take a class this summer….I am excited she has the chance to be there.
    I know the classes aren’t cheap, but seriously, they are worth every penny!

  • 4. CPSnewbie  |  February 24, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    I’d like to second hopeful’s comments on CTD at Northwestern. While it isn’t cheap, financial assistance is available and it has been SO worth it for my child. He basically gets through his regular school week (no gifted programs, bored) with the incentive of going to the Saturday program they have at NW. His teachers have been fantastic and he loves it. On a reverse note, my son scored very well on the CTD tests but CPS gifted programs would never accept those! 🙂

  • 5. RL Julia  |  February 24, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    I am with testing veteran on the $100. My son was accepted in CTD and took a few classes there for two years (in the summer). Then there was the year where his math teacher didn’t do much and he decided he didn’t need to do math anymore. As a result, his ISAT score dropped below the pre-requisite number for CTD.

    When I called to see if I could get him into a CTD math class to hopefully re-engage him, I was told he was no longer eligible or “gifted” in math (despite having gotten into the program for everything and successfully completing two CTD math/science classes) because of this score. When his ISAT math score popped back up into the 99th percentile the next year – he was gifted again and I got tons of e-mails about how he should take the EXPLORE test and blah, blah, blah.

    While I agree that the classes are great and the teacher’s phenomenal, after dealing with the whole “he’s gifted, not he’s not gifted – oh wait, he’s gifted” deal I’ve kinda written the program off as not really helpful for parents who are looking to CTD to help keep kids engaged.

  • 6. CPSnewbie  |  February 28, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    I have a question about how you rank schools for your choices. If I ranked, for example, Coonley as my sixth choice and my child receives a 142 on the gifted exam, does a child whose application ranked Coonley 1st but has a 140 get the spot? (I understand that in the past this score would not get you in to Coonley, but I’m using this as a hypothetical.) I’m confused as to how your school choices are affected by rank placement and score. In other words, which wins the slot? Higher score lower rank of school, or Lower score higher rank of school? (Let’s not even throw in the social economic tier, just purely score.)

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