Highly Capable Programs


Highly Capable Education Plan


Welcome to Nine Mile School District’s Highly Capable Program.  We are passionate about serving the needs of gifted and potentially gifted students.  We are proud of our students’ academic potential and the bright future they represent.  Working together, staff, administration, students, teachers and parents are collaborating to help these exceptional kids stay challenged at the appropriate level during their regular school day, as well as offering some after school enrichment and summer opportunities for continued depth and rigor.  We are committed to reaching all students where they are, and customize learning opportunities that are optimal for their abilities.  Thank you for your interest and support!


It is our mission to identify and provide, through a variety of instructional strategies, for the unique intellectual, social, and emotional needs of our highly capable students to help ensure their college and career readiness.  



Highly Capable Services are designed for students identified as advanced learners through cognitive and/or academic performance. According to Washington State law, students identified for Highly Capable Program services are those who

“perform or show potential for performing at significantly advanced academic levels compared with others of their age, experiences, or environments. Outstanding abilities are seen within students’ general intellectual aptitudes, specific academic abilities, and/or creative productivity within a specific domain.”

Combined with the commitment of our Board of Directors and instructional staff, State law ensures high-quality HiCap services for eligible students; here in Nine Mile School District, we offer a continuum of appropriate Highly Capable Program services.


     Whole-child focus: Support for academic, creative, and social-emotional development, fostering a growth mindset.

     Different work, not more work: Developing innovative, creative, and critical thinkers through access to advanced learning standards with appropriate depth and rigor.

     Not a one-size-fits-all: Highly Capable qualified students have diverse needs and unique challenges, in addition to high cognitive capability and/or academic achievement. Often this requires the collaboration of teams across programs to meet the needs of individual learners.

     Equitable access: Ability and talent are equally distributed, opportunity is not. All students, regardless of race, income, culture, special needs, or support program, have the potential to qualify for advanced learning services when given equitable opportunity with culturally and linguistically accessible instruments and an unbiased qualification system.



Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 392-170-042 requires school districts to annually make public notification to parents and students before any major identification activity for Highly Capable services occurs. Next month, Nine Mile Falls School District will engage in preliminary identification activities of those who may show potential for performance significantly above grade level. This helps us provide daily services within the regular classroom (including differentiation of instruction, special awareness regarding the social-emotional needs of gifted kids, and more). Secondly, it opens the opportunity for certain higher-performing students to participate in after-school enrichment programs. We have several grade-level opportunities available year round.

Some examples of criteria used to identify students are in-district assessments like MAP, state assessments like the SBAC, curriculum or classroom-based assessments, teacher recommendations and parent nominations. If you believe your student clearly displays significant above average ability and may benefit from adjusted class activities or more challenge and rigor, you may fill out a Parent Nomination form and submit it to Peter Elzey at the administration building.

You may submit these forms any time throughout the year. Contact Peter Elzey at 509.340.4305 or [email protected] if you have questions.