PEAK Referral Process

There are six steps in the gifted identification process.

Intellectually Gifted (PEAK) 


Type One-Mass Screening

Starkville Oktibbeha School District will screen all students in 1st grade using Raven’s Progressive Matrices (RAVENS).  Students who score at or above the 90th percentile on the RAVENS shall move forward in the process.  Students who score between the 85th and 89th percentile shall be subjected to an Emerging Potential for Gifted Referral Checklist.  If the students meet the criteria on this checklist, they shall move forward in the referral process.

Type Two- Individual Referral

A student may be referred by a parent, teacher, counselor, administrator, peer, self, or anyone else who has reason to believe a student might be intellectually or artistically gifted.  District personnel shall collect the data required to satisfy the referral criteria for the Intellectually Gifted and Artistically Gifted programs.

The child must satisfy 3 of the following measures in order to move to the next stage of assessment:

  • A score at or above the 90th percentile on a group measure of intelligence that has been administered within the past twelve months.
  • A score at or above the superior range on a normed published characteristics of giftedness checklist
  • A score at or above the superior range on a normed published measure of leadership
  • A score at or above the 90th percentile on any of the total reading, total math, total language, total science, total social students or the composite score on a normed achievement test.
  • A score at or above the 90th percentile on a normed measure of cognitive ability
  • A score at or above the 90th percentile on an existing measure of individual intelligence that has been administered within the past twelve months.


The local survey committee (LSC)* reviews referral data and makes the following recommendation:

  • The student satisfies minimal criteria on at least three measures and should move forward to the assessment stage.
  • Student does not satisfy minimal criteria on at least three measures but LSC feels strongly that additional data should be collected and the student reconsidered.
  • Student does not satisfy minimal criteria on at least three measures and identification process stops.

At this point, district personnel shall make the decision as to the possibility that the student might be eligible for consideration as a candidate for an emerging potential for gifted assessment.  If it is believed that the student might have emerging gifted potential, the Emerging Potential Intellectually Gifted Checklist should be completed for possible use during the assessment process.


District personnel shall obtain written parental permission for testing. Parents are notified of their rights under the Family Education and Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).


Once the LSC has determined that a student has satisfied minimal criteria on three measures from the referral stage, the student shall move forward to the assessment stage which includes the individual test of intelligence.

District personnel shall review and compile all data available on the student.  This data shall also be made available to the licensed examiner.  The assessment stage is the individual test of intelligence, which shall be administered by a licensed examiner.  The examiner shall review all available data on the students and use that information to select the most appropriate test of intelligence.  Standard operating procedures should be followed during the selection and administration of all assessments as reflected in the examiner’s manuals. 


The examiner shall provide a signed and dated report of the test administration to include testing conditions, scores on all subtest, and the strengths and weaknesses of the students.  A student must score at or above the 91st percentile composite/full scale or the 91st percentile on approved subtests (as per publisher). 

Emerging Potential for Gifted:

Students who are ADHD/ADD or have satisfied criteria on the Emerging Potential for Gifted Checklist who did not satisfy minimal acceptable criteria on an individual test of intelligence, but did score at least the 84th percentile or have a scale score that falls within the range of the 90th percentile confidence interval of the state minimal scale/percentile score, may be administered one of the following additional measure to determine eligibility:

  1. A test of cognitive abilities with a minimal score at the 90th percentile
  2. A group intelligence measure with a minimal score at the 90th percentile, or

Potentially Twice-Exceptional Students:

Students who already have an eligibility ruling under IDEA and are being assessed for an intellectually gifted eligibility, and who did not satisfy all the required minimal acceptable referral criteria but did meet at least one referral criterion shall have their results reviewed by the LSC and a licensed examiner.

If the student scores at or above the 91st percentile on the individual test of intelligence (composite score or approved subtest score) or in the opinion of the reviewing committee, would benefit from participation in the intellectually gifted program, the student may be granted a provisional eligibility for the intellectually gifted program for a period of one year. At the end of that year, the student’s teacher of the gifted shall meet with the review committee to discuss the student’s performance in the program.  If the student has demonstrated success in the program, the LSC shall change the eligibility status from provisional to regular eligibility.  If the student has not been successful in the program, the provisional eligibility shall be revoked.


Once the Assessment Report is finalized, the LSC shall meet to review all data and determine if eligibility criteria has or has not been satisfied.  The LSC shall rule that the student is or is not eligible for the intellectually gifted program.

District personnel shall notify in writing the parents of each student tested for the intellectually gifted program about the assessment results.  District personnel shall offer to explain any of the results about which the parents have questions.  District personnel shall also notify parents in writing about their rights under the FERPA.

Once a student is ruled eligible for placement in the gifted program, the parent has the right to agree to placement or withhold placement of the child in the program. Written parental permission must be obtained before the child can be placed in the program.



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