Eligibility, Screening and Referral


Portsmouth Public Schools Program of Gifted Services works to increase the number of students referred and identified so that gender, socioeconomic, and ethnic factors are representative of the division. The district increases representation by using identification instruments and procedures that assist in facilitating the identification of all students.

  • All second-grade students are screened utilizing the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT).
  • Students can be referred by parents, teachers, or other adults with knowledge of the students’ abilities.
  • Multiple criteria are used to determine the student’s eligibility, including test scores, portfolio, parent rating, and teacher rating.

Gifted services staff, school counselors, and gifted resource teachers in each school will confer with classroom teachers annually in grades K-6 to determine candidates for referral. Parents can contact their child’s to request a referral for gifted education. Parents new to the school division will be informed about the opportunity to request a gifted referral when they complete the student registration form.

School counselors and administrators will review all available standardized test data (ability and achievement tests such as Stanford Achievement Tests, Standards of Learning (SOL) assessments, PALS, benchmark tests, portfolios, transfer student records, etc.) and consult with classroom teachers for consideration of referral and further evaluation.

Referral procedures for General Intellectual Aptitude
Portsmouth Public Schools uses a holistic approach to identify students who demonstrate accelerated levels of academics, creative thinking patterns, and greater aptitude than their peers of the same age. This approach encompasses both quantitative and qualitative measures to assess student aptitude and potential:

  • Referral
  • Assessments/data collection
  • Student Cumulative Record Analysis
  • Eligibility/Placement Determination
  • Appeal Process

Referral forms are available at each school and the school district’s website. The PPS referral form should be completed and returned to the Program of Gifted Services office. Students may be referred to the Program of Gifted Services by anyone familiar with the student’s intellectual abilities, including a current or past teacher, parent, community member, or peer. Students may also self-refer. Upon receipt of a referral form, permission to test and home rating scales are requested of the parent/guardian. The student’s current teacher is also asked to complete a teacher rating scale.

Parents receive written notification of the eligibility decision within 90 instructional days of receipt of the parent/guardian’s consent for assessment. Any referral from a military transfer student will be considered upon arrival. Referrals received at the end of the school year (referrals that can’t be completed within the 90 required instructional days prior to school dismissal) will be initiated and/or completed once the school session resumes in the fall.

Transfer students for whom a referral is submitted are considered for the program when their permanent record (documentation) indicates they have been identified for gifted education services in another school division. Additional data may need to be gathered to determine placement depending on availability and validity of existing information. Students previously identified as gifted in another school division must go through the PPS referral and identification process to determine possible eligibility for the PPS Program of Gifted Services.

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2023 SchoolMessenger Corporation. All rights reserved.