Advanced Academic Programs
Advanced Academic Programs (AAP)
Updated Spring 2023
Screening for Subject Specific (Level II) and Part-Time (Level III) Services
Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) is committed to challenging all students through talent development and differentiated instruction to meet the needs of advanced learners.
Screening for Subject Specific (Level II) and Part-Time (Level III) Services
Students can be screened for subject-specific and part-time AAP services at any time in the school year. In the spring, schools review data on all students to determine services for the start of the next school year.
• Parents or guardians can initiate the screening process by submitting the AAP School-Based Services (Level II-III) Referral Form to the Advanced Academic Resource Teacher (AART) or Assistant Principal by April 15, annually.
• The AAP School-Based Services (Level II-III) Referral Form may be found at https://www.fcps.edu/academics/academic-overview/advanced-academic-programs-aap/advancedacademic-program-aap-forms or by searching “AAP Forms” at https://www.fcps.edu/.
• Parents or guardians who submit a referral will be notified by the local elementary school of their student’s eligibility status by early June.
Screening Process for Subject Specific (Level II) and Part-Time (Level III) Services
Multiple criteria are reviewed holistically to determine eligibility for all FCPS advanced academic services. Committees consider student work from opportunities with AAP lessons, examples of student reasoning or gifted behaviors from class discussions and activities, progress reports, achievement and ability scores, and parent or guardian input. Committees consider whether students have access to a group of students with similar academic needs to support academic conversations and growth in the classroom.
Appeals Process for Subject-Specific (Level II) and Part-Time (Level III) Services
If a parent or guardian wishes to appeal an ineligible decision, they may submit an appeal with new data for consideration by the local school screening committee. This new information should be submitted to the Advanced Academic Resource Teacher or Assistant Principal.
Subject-Specific and Part-Time Services Overview
Subject Specific and Part-Time Services in Elementary School
FCPS offers a continuum of advanced academic services for all students in Grades K-12. The continuum of services approach allows for a focus on matching services to students’ needs rather than labeling students.
• Multiple entry points for deeper learning opportunities in specific areas of need as they develop.
• A cluster group of students with similar academic needs to support student learning and growth.
Teachers, administrators, and Advanced Academic Resource Teachers (AARTs) work together to provide the following levels of school-based services at the elementary level:
Access to Rigor, Grades K-6 (Level I)
All students have opportunities to think critically, reason, and problem-solve.
• All teachers use critical and creative thinking strategies in their lessons
• Classroom teachers provide opportunities using materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework a minimum of once per quarter.
Because Access to Rigor services are for all FCPS students, there is not a screening process.
Subject Specific Advanced Differentiation, Grades K-6 (Level II)
Some students require differentiation beyond the needs of age-level peers in their class in at least one specific subject area. Classroom teachers may adjust instruction for students in these areas
• Providing different assignments and resources in those subjects,
• Grouping students by their strengths, interests, and readiness, and
• Providing additional challenges using materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework. Student needs for subject specific differentiation are re-evaluated each year at the local school.
Part-Time Advanced Academic Programs, Grades 3-6 (Level III)
Some students have advanced academic abilities in multiple subject areas and require differentiation beyond the needs of age-level peers in their class in multiple content areas.
• Students work with other students that have similar academic needs through weekly pull-out classes or weekly co-taught lessons with the AART and classroom teacher.
• Teachers provide frequent opportunities to use materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework in Language Arts, science, social studies, and/or mathematics.
Part-time services continue through Grade 6. Students do not need to be evaluated each year.
Screening for Full-Time (Level IV) Services
Screening Timeline for Full-Time Services Screening for full-time (level IV) AAP services happens at the district/central level rather than by local schools. For your planning for next school year, please know that screening for full-time (level IV) services occurs during two specific screening cycles:
• Fall screening is available for students who are new to FCPS since January. ο Fall referrals are due October 15, annually.
• Spring screening is available for any Grade 2-7 FCPS-enrolled student. The referral window is from the first day of school - December 15, annually.
For more information, please visit the AAP website at: https://www.fcps.edu/registration/advancedacademics-identification-and-placement/current-fcps-students.
Full-Time Advanced Academic Programs, Grades 3-8 (Level IV)
Some advanced learners need a full-time advanced academic program with differentiated instruction in all four core content areas (Language Arts, mathematics, social studies, and science). Students eligible for full-time AAP services are cluster grouped on a full-time basis and receive:
• Full-time use of materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework in Language Arts, mathematics, science, and social studies, and
• Curriculum that is differentiated through acceleration, depth, and complexity of content.
Full-time services continue through Grade 8. Students do not need to be evaluated each year.
At Ravensworth, our Advanced Academic Resource Teacher, Andrea Trumbull, ensures that all students have opportunities to be challenged using the Advanced Academics Curriculum.
The goals of the Advanced Academics Program are to provide rigorous academic opportunities to all students, identify student strengths and abilities, and provide appropriate challenges for all students. We believe talent can be nurtured and developed in all students. AAP services for a student may change over time.
Ravensworth offers students Level I, Level II, and Level III services.
For more information about the Advanced Academics Program (AAP), including the referral process, please visit the FCPS AAP website: https://www.fcps.edu/academics/academic-ove
Our Advanced Academic Resource Teacher
- Gifted Education Teacher, ES
ADVANCED ACADEMIC PROGRAMS (AAP) ELEMENTARY CONTINUUM OF SERVICES
Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) offers a continuum of advanced academic services for all students in Grades K-12. Learning experiences are designed to develop higher-level thinking through enrichment, acceleration, and extension of the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs). Teachers, administrators, and Advanced Academic Resource Teachers (AARTs) work together to provide the following levels of services at the elementary level. A video showing each level of service in action, as well as information about middle and high school services, can be found at https://www.fcps.edu/academics/elementary-school-academics-k-6/advanced-academics.
- Critical and Creative Thinking Lessons, Grades K-6 (Level I)
Level I services are provided to all students in Kindergarten through Grade 6. Level I services includes teaching students to use critical and creative thinking skills to process content. It also includes periodic opportunities to use advanced academic curriculum throughout the year. Student responses to these lessons are used as part of the conversations and activities. Descriptions and videos of the nine critical and creative thinking strategies can be found at https://www.fcps.edu/academics/elementary-school-academics-k-6/advanced-academics/critical-and-creative-thinking.
Because Level I services are for all FCPS students, there is not a screening process.
- Differentiated Lessons in Areas of Academic Strength, Grades K-6 (Level II)
Level II services are available for students in Kindergarten through Grade 6 for students with strength in a specific subject area. The AART collaborates with classroom teachers to provide additional challenges within the classroom using materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework to extend and enrich in the subject area strength. Screening for this level of service is ongoing throughout the school year and all students are screened for Level II services each Spring. Multiple criteria are used to screen for this level of service and decisions are made at the local school level.
To have your student screened for Level II services, complete the AAP School-Based Referral Form available on the Forms page: https://www.fcps.edu/node/38893.
- Part-Time Advanced Academic Programs, Grades 3-6 (Level III)
Level III services are available for students in Grades 3-6 who are eligible for part-time direct services from the AART. Students are identified by a screening committee at the local school. The AART uses materials from the AAP Curriculum Framework in the four core subject areas through either a weekly pull-out class or weekly co-teaching model with the classroom teacher. Screening for this level of service is ongoing throughout the school year. Multiple criteria are used to screen for this level of service and decisions are made at the local school level.
To have your student screened for Level III services, complete the AAP School-Based Referral Form available on the Forms page: https://www.fcps.edu/node/38893.
- Full-Time Advanced Academic Programs, Grades 3-8 (Level IV)
Level IV services are available for students in Grades 3-8 who are found eligible through a central selection process. Eligible students use curriculum from the AAP Curriculum Framework in the four academic subject areas on a full-time basis.
Multiple criteria are reviewed to determine eligibility for all FCPS advanced academic services. The countywide central selection committee determines eligibility for full-time AAP Level IV placement.
Screening for Level IV services occurs during specific screening cycles:
- Fall screening is held for students who are new to FCPS and have been referred
- Spring screening is held for any FCPS-enrolled student who has been referred
Due to the volume of files screened centrally for Level IV services, deadlines are strictly held.
- A referral form may be turned in during the referral window (September 8-December 1, 2020)
- Students new to FCPS may be considered for Fall screening and Spring screening
- The referral form is available on the Forms page: https://www.fcps.edu/node/38893
Additional information about the holistic screening process and information used for screening can be found at https://www.fcps.edu/registration/advanced-academics-identification-and-placement/current-fcps-students.
For current information on ability testing, please visit the Testing and Identification Timeline at https://www.fcps.edu/registration/advanced-academics-identification-and-placement/current-fcps-students/testing-and.
- The Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) will not be offered this school year.
- The one-time retest option for the Naglieri Nonverbal Abilities Test (NNAT) or CogAT test will not be available this school year.
- There will be a process for students without an abilities test on file to take the NNAT in December 2020. Local schools will determine which students require the NNAT and will reach out to families to schedule safe and socially distanced testing.
Students must have one ability test score to go through the Level IV screening process.