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EXCEL Program

EXCEL - Programs for Highly Capable Students

Letter of Introduction 

What is EXCEL?


EXCEL is Evergreen School District's program for meeting the unique academic, social, and emotional needs of highly capable students in grades K-12.



Parents may request a program preference from program options once eligibility is determined.
(Please refer to Identification and Selection Process regarding program placement.)
Transportation is provided by the district for all the program options.



Grades K-1: Identification and Classroom-Based DifferentiationAll services in K-1 are home classroom based. We will not be busing students in these grades to a district based magnet program. Kindergarten classes are given classroom enrichment activities that make it possible for teachers to observe and screen for gifted characteristics. The CogAT Screener is given in the spring of the year.The highest scoring students will then be served through classroom based differentiation and referred to test for EXCEL in first grade.

Grades 2-5: EXCEL Pull-Out: Students may be placed in one-day-per-week classes held at Evergreen Flex Academy. They are bused to FLEX on that day from home and returned to their neighborhood school before the end of the day. Students interact with others from the same grade level across the district in activities designed to respond to the needs of highly capable learners by strengthening communication, research, interpersonal, and leadership abilities, with a focus on critical and creative thinking processes. This is an enrichment option and does not accelerate the academic areas of Language Arts, Math, and Science, which are taught in the regular classroom. Pull-Out students are also cluster grouped in their regular classrooms with differentiated instruction when feasible.

Grades 3-5: EXCEL Full-TimeStudents placed in the Full-Time Program are bused, based on their residence, to their designated magnet school, either Image or Illahee Elementary schools. Students admitted to this program must demonstrate high academic achievement of at least one year above grade level. The faster pace and greater depth/complexity is designed to meet the needs of academically gifted learners. Successful students exhibit persistence, strong motivation, and task commitment, as well as the need and readiness for an accelerated and differentiated curriculum.


Grades 6-8: EXCEL HumanitiesEXCEL students placed in EXCEL Humanities Cluster. Students attend their residential middle school’s EXCEL program.


Grades 9-12: Advance Placement CourseworkHigh School EXCEL students are served through Honors Placement programs such as Running Start and College in High School.




The EXCEL curriculum for students in the elementary Full Time and middle school EXCEL follows the district’s curriculum frameworks and the state’s academic learning requirements at an accelerated pace.

All EXCEL classes emphasize:

  • critical and creative thinking processes
  • communication, organizational, study, research,and quality production skills
  • group processes
  • decision making
  • problem solving
  • affective/emotional development
  • self-direction and accountability

Identification and Selection Process


Anyone (parents, teachers, media specialists, friends, family, acquaintances, members of the community, cohorts, etc.) may recommend a student for testing. The process is twofold, including 1) eligibility, and 2) placement. Selection and placement is made by the Multi-Disciplinary Selection Committee (MDSC). The MDSC, made up of administrators, teachers, and program staff, reviews test data and first determines eligibility.

They subsequently determine placements based upon test scores and space available, as well as teacher recommendation, parent preference, and any supporting data supplied. Students may also be placed through the Appeal Process, in which the MDSC examines documentation for students whose test scores did not meet the criteria but for whom other evidence exists of high ability, a need for program placement, and a high probability of success. Retesting for eligibility purposes is available, although currently identified students will not be retested annually to maintain eligibility. Additionally, eligible students cannot be retested solely for the purpose of increasing their ranking score. The criteria for retesting are: 1) at least 6 months between testing sessions; and 2) testing at the next higher grade level. Private testing results, as well as testing information from other school districts, are accepted for review. The State of Washington requires both mental ability (IQ) and achievement testing.

Eligibility & Placement Requirements:

  1. Above the 90th percentile in the mental ability composite score, or
  2. Above the 95th percentile in the achievement composite score and any mental ability subtest in the Verbal or Quantitative academic area above the 90th percentile.
  3. Private testing: IQ above the 95th percentile.



  • Placement is made by the MDSC using the Washington Administrative Code (State Law).
  • Elementary offers two programs.
  • Students meeting the placement eligibility criteria are ranked through a process which combines achievement and mental ability scores. EXCEL is unable to use, for ranking or identification purposes, scores from achievement tests which do not include reading, language, and math subtests.
  • Students are ranked and placed until the Full-Time class enrollment cap is reached. Students are then ranked in the same manner on waiting lists. 
  • Students will then be placed in Pull-Out classes.
  • The MDSC uses rank scoring, parent input, teacher recommendation and other supporting information to place students.
  • Students are placed in the appropriate school based upon their residential address.
  • Occasionally placements for a student are not a good fit and a change is made in placement. Changing more than once between programs is discouraged and requires available space and MDSC approval.


Appeals are considered annually by the Multi-Disciplinary Selection Committee and are based upon a review of the documentation received. Please see the schedule under Identification for deadlines. Contact the EXCEL office for forms and information. Students may be appealed more than once.


2016-2017 SCHEDULE



Pull-Out classes begin 
September 12, 2016. The last day of EXCEL Pull-Out is June 5, 2017.



Classes begin and end on the same days as regular classes.




Fall Testing: Testing is limited to students new to the district since November 2015. Placement for 2016-17 school year.

Registration Opens Aug. 1, 2016

Registration Closes Sept. 8, 2016

Testing Sept. 10, 2016 (Saturday)


Winter Testing: Grades 1-11. For placement in the 2017-2018 school year.

Registration Opens: Oct.1, 2016
Registration Closes: Nov. 14th 2016


Registration for testing is done online. Click on the clipboard icon in top right corner to create account and then select "register for testing.


Testing Schedule mailed: Mid-December 2016

Testing will be done in neighborhood schools during regular school hours January 3 - February 10, 2017.

Test results mailed Mid-March

Appeals Open (Contact EXCEL Office): March 20, 2017

Appeals Deadline to EXCEL Office: March 31, 2017

Notification of Placement: Early May 2017



Gifted learners need a faster pace and greater depth/complexity than is offered through the standard curriculum. They also need interaction with their intellectual peers. With this in mind, the goals of the EXCEL Program are:




The Highly Capable Programs Advisory Committee is a representative group of parents, teachers, and administrators which advises the district about EXCEL matters and acts as a liaison between parents, program personnel, and the community. For more informationabout the Advisory Committee call the EXCEL office at (360) 604-4001.

EXCEL PTO is a group of parents that once per year invites donations. EXCEL PTO meets quarterly and disburses funds to support EXCEL classroom district-wide. For more information, contact or visit the PTO webpage at To donate fund, checks payable to EXCEL PTO may be mailed to:
P.O. Box 87543
Vancouver WA  98687.


For questions regarding test scores, placement options, testing registration, etc., please contact your students’ teacher or your school’s EXCEL Liaison. The following are EXCEL building liaisons:



Burnt Bridge Creek Susan Payton
Burton Amie Graser
Columbia Valley Rene Elliott
Crestline Wendi Sumner
Ellsworth Sherri James
Endeavour Molly Carter
Fircrest Angela Smith
Fisher's Landing Kristie Wall
Harmony Nancy Frank
Heaerthwood Kristina Parmenter
Home Choice Melissa Poston
Illahee Marci Hay
Image Heather Majewski
Marrion Elizabeth Christina
Mill Plain Regina White
Orchards Sandra Hacker
Pioneer Janet Dondelinger
Riverview Mary Demert
Sifton Angie Mitchell
Silver Star Amberlynn Lane
Sunset Karen Morley-Smith
York Stephanie Land
Cascade Adrianne Campbell
Covington Todd Kalbrener
Frontier Heather Love
Pacific Brad Riggs
Shahala Gregg Brown
Wy'east Kim Curry
High Schools Contact Counseling Center


Testing Registration is now online!

Please contact the EXCEL office if your student is not attending an Evergreen school. 

If you have a student who is in grades 9-12 who performs or shows potential for performing at significantly advanced academic levels when compared with others of their age, experiences, or environments, and has not been identified as Highly Capable, and you would like to have them tested, please contact the Highly Capable Office for testing.

EXCEL Materials


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